Non-profit targets programs to Sarasota’s most at-risk community

Updated: Aug. 22, 2019 at 4:09 PM EDT
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SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - A non-profit organization in Newtown is on a mission to empower people in crisis and a community that continually struggles with crime, drugs, domestic violence and unemployment.

Tina Peterman had been selling and doing drugs since she graduated high school, but when Peterman went to prison, she decided enough was enough.

“I was just so tired. I was so tired," said Peterman. “I’m 55-years old now, so it’s been a long haul, but when I met her, it’s like she cared."

The person she met was Second Chance, Last Opportunity founder Dr. April Glasco, who Peterman says was the first person to hear her cries for help.

“I got my first apartment that I’ve ever had," said Peterman. "All my responsibilities started. With the help of her, I learned how to pay my rent, I just learned how to be. [I’m] trying to be a modern citizen.”

She’s come a long way, but there’s still a journey ahead of her.

“You can’t get too comfortable with your life because you can fall backwards, but like I said, April’s there for me through this,” she said.

Dr. Glasco says it’s because she knows the feeling of being broken.

“I was a broken woman at one time," said Dr. Glasco. "Many, many, years ago. Today, I know who I am.”

Now she uses her heart to help and her voice to heal.

“Music is healing, music is uplifting, music brings a person to realize that, ‘I have a choice,’" said Dr. Glasco. "So it heals that person within, to find themselves, [and] that they are more strong than they can ever imagine. They don’t have to stay in that place.”

Second Chance, Last Opportunity held a fundraiser over the weekend to raise money for several programs that help at-risk teens and low income and homeless families. In an area of Sarasota known for its crime and transgression, Dr. Glasco says it’s crucial they teach clients how to manage life, parent, progress and heal from abuse.

“Anything that kept them from rising up, that has kept them down for so long," she explained. "So we want them to know that they are more than what they say they are and what someone has tried to keep them that way.”

To learn more about Second Chance, Last Opportunity, click here.

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