Blog Posts

Nancy Cotterill co-founded 2nd Chance Indiana (as UNITE INDY) in late 2016. She was editor and later publisher of Indianapolis Business Journal, and then created a not-for-profit online news outlet for the four million wheelchair users in the U.S. As an award-winning journalist, Nancy uses her talents to promote efforts to fight the causes of overall poverty throughout our area while working to spread the specific message that second chance employment is lowering recidivism, changing lives, and raising families out of poverty.

June 21, 2021

In a world where you can't go to the bathroom without asking permission and are locked up in a 10 x 10' cell at night; in a world where you have to endure a strip search to see your wife on visiting day--that's if you're lucky enough to still have a wife or a visitor of any kind, there is one thing to look forward to: the mail...


June 20, 2021

There are two voices in that head of yours. Humph, you say. Well, there are. There's the voice that wants go to that party and the other voice that says "better not." There's the voice who takes offense at someone's actions, and the other voice that sees it from the other guy's perspective and realizes it's your ego that is really bothering you. Who among us has not experienced the voice of warning in times of danger and of conscience in times of temptation, but has shrugged off the nudges...


May 21, 2021

It seemed like a normal Wednesday morning. People were about town with their heads duly sheathed in little face diapers. As usual, those of us who look for friendly faces were left to wonder about the disposition of the folks they encountered. It is almost impossible to tell if people are scowling or smiling with a mask in place. Then out of the blue came Mayor Joe Hogsett's announcement that Marion County residents can drop the mask as of June 7th! So, now…well not now…but in two and a half weeks, IF the City-County Council approves the Mayor's announcement, we can almost return to normal...


May 7, 2021

When Tyler Perry stood up to accept a humanitarian award at the Oscar ceremony recently, he said words that we all need to hear."I refuse hate," he said. "I refuse to hate someone because they are Mexican, or black, or white, or LBGTQ, or Police Officers, or Asian… I dedicate this award to all those who will stand with me in the middle. "He went on...


April 21, 2021

The noted author and speaker Wayne Dyer used to tell the story about a man who dragged a heavy bag of dung around with him. Once in a while he'd reach in and smear some of it on his face so everyone could see it. Dyer said that man is us. We each have a bag of what has been done to us, and what someone said to us, and how they didn't treat us fairly, and how we didn't deserve it. The bag is heavy. But sometimes others forget about all we've been through. So then we trot out the whole sorry tale...


April 7, 2021

This is one of those great stories where everyone is anonymous, but it all happened here in the last few months and days. It begins with a man who was serving time in prison. We'll call him Paul. When he was released he went to live in faith-based transitional housing. But, the clock was ticking. He had been given a certain amount of time to find a job and save enough money to rent a place to live or go back to prison. For a while it didn't look like he was going to pull it off. But...


March 22, 2021

One of the biggest myths about poverty in the U.S. is that poor people don't want to work. In fact, most American adults living in poverty who can work do work. They are in poverty because they work in low paying, often part-time jobs. Of those in poverty who are not employed, a large percentage are people who are "justice involved", which is a new term for ex-offenders who have been incarcerated.Generally speaking, they are released from prison with little that would allow them to find work...


March 8, 2021

Today in Bible study, the subject was how to have good relationships. The teacher maintained all we have to do, pretty much, is keep the Golden Rule. I'm sure I got that message loud and clear when I was five or so, but who knew my Sunday school teacher was so smart? For those who didn't have a SS teacher, it says, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." Different Bible versions say it differently, but Matthew 7:12 and Luke 6:31 both state it with the same meaning. Then I found that this is not a new idea. The first such command dates to an Egyptian 2000 years before Christ and was repeated in many similar forms in writings and religions from all over the world...


February 22, 2021

On the phone with a friend recently, she said, "You know with COVID restrictions I've spent a lot more time with my family." She paused…. "I realize I don't like them very much." I laughed--it was surely a joke. But many families have been under a lot of strain with kids home from school, parents working from home, and many having lost their jobs entirely. We seem to either be suffering from isolation or from too much togetherness...


February 5, 2021

Years ago Jim and I wrote a book on generosity. It began with the classic Starfish Story. You know the one--there are thousands of starfish on the beach dying in the sun and a fellow comes along throwing as many as possible back into the ocean. Another man, walking the beach says to him, "What's the point? You can't possibly save them all." As he launches another starfish toward the water, the fellow replies, "no, but I saved that one."If a starfish is important, how much more is a man or woman?


Contact Information

2nd Chance Indiana
241 West 38th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46208

317-279-6670

Our Mission

Our mission is to reduce recidivism and rebuild lives through the dignity of work.