Hillsborough House of Hope transforms former inmates - WFLA News Channel 8

Hillsborough House of Hope transforms former inmates

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TAMPA, FL (WFLA) -

From inmates to fashion models, the transformation of seven Hillsborough County women is pretty remarkable thanks to the House of Hope.

The organization held it's third annual Spring Fling Fashion Show at the Tampa Yacht Club today to raise money to help other formerly incarcerated women transition back into society successfully.

Barbary Curry is a recovered addict and House of Hope graduate who's held a job for the last eight years. 

"Before my addiction I was a stable person," she explained. "I chose to turn to drugs."

Curry says the House of Hope gave her the skills she needed to beat her drug addiction and to re-enter the work force.

"It gave me a foundation. It gave me my roots back. It taught me how to be disciplined and how to budget, manage my money, just gave me back the things that had strayed away from me," Curry said.

Jennifer Williams has a similar story.  "I had to go to jail. I had to go to prison, and I came across the Hillsborough House of Hope," she said

Williams says being able to show the world a different version of herself now is empowering and something she believes others can do too.

"You have to be willing to quit and just like me I went to any extremes to get my drugs. Now I go to any extremes for my recovery," Williams said.

As for Juanita Curtis who is drug free and employed at a local mattress company she hopes others are inspired by her transformation.

"I think that it's important that people know you can change if you want it and if you stop beating yourself up for where you've been and just get off the poor me syndrome you can do something better," she said.

The Hillsborough House of Hope was founded in 2003.  The annual fashion show fundraiser typically generates about $20,000 for the non-profit organization.

 

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