The REPENT program (Recidivism Prevention through Entrepreneurial Training) was created by Marte King and utilizes a combination of business and life skills training to provide job opportunities for ex-offenders who typically have trouble finding meaningful employment. Marte King built on his own experiences in prison when he created the program.
"I had lived a life of crime that finally caught up with me," says King. "But I took ownership of my own rehabilitation while in prison. I realized that the skills I developed in the streets were not unlike the skills required to be a business owner. I went back to school and began teaching entrepreneurial training classes to my fellow inmates. "
King credits his experience in prison for giving him the confidence to pursue life on the outside as an educator and motivator. "I'm grateful to have the opportunity to reach young men and women who may have a criminal past and to prevent others from going down the same path as I did."CLICK HERE FOR THE LATEST NEWS
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Marté K. King is the founder of REPENT, INC, author of two books (Fruition & One Mann Team) and Youth Outreach & Program Coordinator for the Trenton Housing Authority. While serving a 26 year sentence, Mr. King gained post-secondary education through correspondence at Ohio University where he studied Business Administration & Communications. Realizing that legal and illegal entrepreneurial ventures had many of the same fundamental tenements, he was able to develop a program that translates these likenesses and nurtures innate risk-taking propensities. The program is called Recidivism Prevention through Entrepreneurial Training (REPENT) and for several years it was taught exclusively in prison. Mr. King also authored two books while incarcerated as the first stage of his own professional pursuits. His book, Fruition, is a memoir of his accounts as a hospice-care provider for men who were dying in prison. It’s inspirational, thought-provoking and humorous and gives a fresh perspective of the incarceration experience.
After serving 10 years, King was released from custody and has given numerous speaking engagements, created a publishing company, and began teaching the principles of REPENT. A graduate student studying for a Master of Human Services (MHS) he is also the founder of Stop the Violence Break the Silence where youth and community members are encouraged to express themselves artistically (rap, dance, or skit) and has had several events in Atlantic City and Trenton.
Mr. King managed to secure a totally unprecedented position, particularly for an ex-offender, with the Trenton Housing Authority as a Youth Outreach & Program Coordinator. His example is one that is being examined to help create otherwise unthinkable opportunities for other ex-offenders to secure gainful employment and helping youth avoid some of the same mistakes they have. For his work as Youth Outreach and Program Coordinator at the Trenton Housing Authority, Mr. King has facilitated several Stop the Violence Break the Silence events in Trenton and helped form a group known as Mothers of Prospect Village. This group consists of of mothers who have children or family who have been victims of violence.
He has also directed a group of at-risk youth in the Donnelly Homes area towards completion of the REPENT program, and in successfully forming their own LLC, the Green Klean Team. Green Klean is currently poised to serve the light trash removal needs of Trenton Housing Authority and the REPENT program will expand to incorporate other sustainable businesses in 2014.