10,000 to 12,000 adults and 500 juveniles are projected to be released from incarceration and returned to communities each year. An even greater number reenter communities from local jails and federal correctional centers. Reentry is the process of leaving a prison, correctional center or jail and returning to society. Reentry can be a significant challenge for the returning citizen and for communities. Individuals released often have few resources and difficulty finding jobs, housing or help. National studies show that approximately two-thirds will be arrested again within three years of release.
To meet this challenge Virginia has developed a comprehensive integrated system for coordinating the planning and provision of offender transitional and reentry services among state, local, civic, nonprofit and faith-based agencies and organizations.
The Virginia Department of Social Services (VDSS) and the local departments of social services (LDSS) provide programs, benefits, services, activities and resources for children and adults such as self-sufficiency, food assistance, medical assistance and family and domestic violence services.
VDSS and LDSS also assist with the formation and leadership of local community collaboration councils that address issues such as reentry, housing, employment, peer support, behavioral health and substance abuse services through coordination of resources and services.
Services for Returning Citizens
Virginia’s Community Reentry Approach
Virginia localities establish local Reentry and Community Collaboration Councils. Councils identify community assets and service gaps, identify resources and coordinate services. The links below provide information on the work of councils and on their location in the state. The scheduled meeting dates of local councils can be found on the Reentry Calendar.
- Recommended Council Composition (PDF)
- MOU VDSS DARS (PDF)
- Protocol for Special Needs Releases (PDF)
- Statement of Partnership (PDF)
Persons Previously Incarcerated - Resources
- Virginia 2-1-1
- Assisting Families of Inmates, Inc
- Boaz & Ruth
- Virginia C.U.R.E.
- OAR of Fairfax
- Offender Aid & Restoration-Richmond
- Friends of Guesthouse
- OAR Jefferson Area Community Corrections
- Virginia CARES
- Virginia Department of Veterans Services
- Virginia Parole Board
Community Involvement - Resources
- Virginia 2-1-1
- Board Source - Building Effective Nonprofit Boards
- Faith & Service Technical Education Network (FASTEN)
- Hesselbein Leadership
- Innovation Network
- Senior Navigator - Virginia's Resource for Health & Aging
- United States Department of Justice - Task Force for Faith-based & Community Initiatives
- University of Wisconsin Extension - Nonprofit Management Educational Resources
- Virginia Community Action Agencies