SecondChanceResources's Library provides an easy way to access the useful links to those on probation, parole, their families and caseworkers. Using a familiar theme of a books, those who aren't comfortable or are intimidated by computers can easily navigate through this 'library' of over 50 websites. In an easy to read format, webpages are posted as links and categorized by topic.

Navigation is easy. There is three ways to get to your target topic. You can expand the menu on the left side of the page using the "hamburger" button, then selecting the 'book' you would like to view. Alternatively, from the homepage (the "Bookshelf"), you can click the right arrow to open to the Table of Contents. This page lists all topic areas, and you simply need to click the topic you'd like to view, and the "book" will flip open to that page. Once on a topic page, you can use both left and right arrows to navigate between the topics with ease.

Footers on every page provide links to give feedback or contact us, in case the user has any websites they would like featured on the page as a link.

The Addiction & Recovery chapter includes tools to help get and stay clean, including links to SAMHSA tools, treatment locators, mutual aid groups, and even what to expect when starting rehab.

The Living Resources chapter contains ways to find help through the United Way for utilities and food, the SAMHSA Resource library and other guides specifically for felons and families of.

The Mental Health chapter provides links to therapy locators, the suicide prevention hotline and guided meditation videos, among others.

The Housing Resources chapter lists many options and organizations to help find housing, from homeless shelters to finding felon-friendly rentals.

The Legal Resources chapter serves to provide users with information about their rights, how to access free legal assistance, and even the laws on the books for every state in the USA.

The Employment chapter has lists of companies that hire felons, information on veterans training and benefits, small business loans and even templates of resumes and cover letters.

The Healthcare chapter's links make finding health insurance and a local clinic an easy process as well as providing information on Medicaid and the United Way's Health Resources.

You will notice there are several links related to Registered (sex) Offenders. This comes from my own involvement with the Registered Offenders community and the knowledge that there are only a few resources out there for this underserved, yet ever-growing demographic, many of whom has struggled themselves with drug and opioid addictions.

This website was created for this competition, however, it will be continued to be maintained regardless of placing or winning. In the upcoming months, SecondChanceResources Library will include embedded maps to find local resources, such as day labor or temp agencies, food banks, homeless shelters and more. Embedded maps will also allow Registered Offenders and their families identify homes that fit within their communities residency restrictions, to find homes that are away from school, churches and parks.

TESTING

Functionality: Test all outgoing and local links.

Usability: Test navigation through side menu, page arrows and Table of Contents links.

Browser Compatibility: (browserling.com is great for this) Test on Internet Explorer 8 & 9 Test on Chrome 43+ Firefox 33+

https://vimeo.com/134894530

https://youtu.be/iFqgP6-91gY

I am an individual submitter and my phone number is 717-991-1864

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Inspiration

As a wife of an exoffender and advocate of this community, this hackathon was completely in-line with my goals to bring more resources and an easier way to find help, to the exoffender community.

How it works

SecondChanceResources Library acts as a virtual library with 'books' that contain an ever-growing list of links to increase access to vital resources.

Challenges I ran into

There were plenty of challenges building a website while learning the languages, syntax and best practices on my own. I started this project with a vision, but no formal programming or web design background. In fact, the last time I did anything like this was customizing my Myspace background in 2002. The biggest challenge was translating my vision into reality. I wanted to be able to click the books from the homepage/bookshelf, and have the book 'open before you'. This became a huge challenge, having the book pick feature as well as the page flip feature. In the future, I plan to figure out a way to get both of these animations within the site.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

Learning HTML, CSS, JQUERY in a month's time, and learning how to purchase and host a domain. I ran into several roadblocks, some of which were relatively easy to resolve, and some of which required lots of ingenuity. :)

What I learned

I learned that there is a decent amount of resources out there, however, they are incredibly hard to find, especially for a novice web-searcher.

What's next for SecondChanceResources?

Interactive "book picking", inclusion of many more resources, and embedded maps for felons and registered offenders. Maps would find local temp and job agencies, locate food banks nearby, and point to resource centers like goodwill or salvation army. Embedded maps for registered offenders would allow them to see if a particular address falls within local residency restrictions (must live 1000+ ft from schools, parks, etc) as well as mapping local registration offices (DMV, DOC, Sherriff's Office, Local PD).

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posted an update

In the upcoming months, SecondChanceResources Library will include embedded maps to find local resources, such as day labor or temp agencies, food banks, homeless shelters and more. Embedded maps will also allow Registered Offenders and their families identify homes that fit within their communities residency restrictions, to find homes that are away from school, churches and parks.

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