LAUDERHILL, Fla. – When an individual has an opportunity to open their very own enterprise, it might really feel a dream aligns with a possibility.

However for a phase of the inhabitants, they by no means get the prospect due to a mistake of their previous.

A brand new program is making an attempt to vary that narrative.

Miko Atkinson is on the verge opening up his very personal ghost kitchen, an entrepreneurial idea that might be a primary for Lauderhill.

“We’ve cornered right into a location, we simply acquired the approval from town,” he stated. “It’s no precise consuming on premises however everyone can come there come get their orders, ship in your Uber Eats, there can be locker programs for folks to return seize their meals and put of their code, and it’s all autonomous.”

Getting so far has been no straightforward journey for Atkinson due to a previous jail stint.

His report from greater than a decade in the past meant that almost all alternatives have been met with closed doorways, till a model new pilot program created a brand new path.


“By us graduating LIEP, we’re really getting an opportunity to leap over a few of these boundaries,” Atkinson stated.

LIEP stands for Lauderhill Inclusive Entrepreneurship Program and is aimed particularly at metropolis residents who’re making an attempt to distance themselves from their felony previous.

“They’re making a pipeline to prosperity for themselves, however then secondly, these are all model new companies,” stated Lauderhill Vice Mayor Melissa P. Dunn. “They’re going to be hiring folks, they’re going to be paying taxes, and I feel that’s phenomenal.”

From tech and transportations corporations to a non-profit group that helps abused youngsters, LEAP is popping vibrant concepts into actual companies.

Giovanni Sairras, who himself has been in these footwear earlier than, serves as successful coach.

“Our motto is simply giving again to the communities that we as soon as took from,” he stated.

Sairras now runs his personal re-entry mentoring program.


“If I can’t discover the individual that I’m on the lookout for, then possibly I should be that particular person, possibly it’s time for me to guide by instance, and that’s precisely what I did,” he stated.

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