A pioneer in Correctional Services for 121 years, we champion the humane treatment of prisoners.
Individuals who have broken the law and have been sentenced to serve time behind prison walls generally receive little regard from the majority of society.
Over the years, the “system” has awkwardly labeled these individuals such monikers as ex-felon, ex-offender, ex-con, parolee, probationer, former convict, once-convicted criminal, formerly incarcerated, and the latest, politically correct, “returning citizen.” The latter sounds as though someone has been spending some long and happy months abroad and is just now finding their way back home to America.
But the truth is the designation isn’t as important as the person. These are real people—mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, daughters, sons, husbands and wives. And for whatever reason, they have now found themselves as an added statistic to another prison report, but they are every bit as human as we are. They are desperately seeking the same basic things as we are and approaching their future with some amount of trepidation just as we are.
Maud Booth, our co-founder, knew this. Booth once said, when she spoke to a group behind prison walls, “When you have served your time, I will nurse you back to health, I will get you work, above all, I will trust you. I will help you over the rough places but, mind you, I will not carry you.”
Today, Volunteers of America continues to address the issues that these citizens face as they make their way back into the communities from which they came because we believe everyone deserves a second chance - and the respect and dignity that goes along with it.
We provide services to help offenders successfully transition from prison to a productive life in the community and we help rehabilitate adult offenders and steer youth to set new, positive directions for their lives. Our services include halfway houses and work-release programs, day reporting, diversion and pre-trial services, residential treatment, family supports, and dispute resolution and mediation services.