Stephanie Lane, 21, is a waitress at Homegirl Café in downtown Los Angeles.

The restaurant, staffed by female gang members trying to leave their past behind, is part of Homeboy Industries, the largest gang intervention program – and one of the most successful – in the U.S.

Quitting a life of drug dealing, fighting and stealing cars on the streets of South Los Angeles, where she followed her father and mother into the Crips gang, is not easy.

The journey to set her life straight illustrates the difficulty of leaving gang life behind. She has been in fights, sent back to prison and gunned down. Each time, she returned to the cafe.

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