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Women in prison prepare for release with LIFE entrepreneurship program

Through Mercy Corps Northwest, hundreds of women in prison are getting a better understanding of what life looks like after they're released.

Mila Mimica, Maggie Vespa

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The women don matching clothing and have smiles on their faces, anxious and excited about their futures. Enthusiastic claps echo through the cafeteria as each name is called. 

It’s graduation day, but there’s no cap or gown in sight. Instead, each woman wears a standard-issue blue crew neck, a pair of loose-fitting jeans and a generic pair of sneakers. 

Some even use a little extra eye shadow they bought at the commissary to mark the momentous occasion. 

They hope against all hope the past 32 weeks were enough to keep them out of prison for good.