Horticultural program aims to rehabilitate Rikers inmates

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NEW YORK -

News 12 got an inside look at a horticultural program that aims to help rehabilitate Rikers Island inmates.

The greenhouse program is a collaboration between the Horticultural Society of New York and the city's Education and Correction departments. It began in 1986 and is still expanding.

Men and woman can participate. They have to apply and be accepted into the program, which allows them two hours a day of gardening time and $20 a week. They can also eat the goods they harvest.

Greenhouse participants receive a certification and help finding work on the outside, sometimes with the Parks Department or jobs watering flowers. Former participants have even reached out after their release to either offer help to or thank those who changed their lives.

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