Life Unlocked

Meeting men and women at prison gates and jail doors as they embark on their re-entry journey.

At Wisdom Unlocked, we believe that incarcerated persons are still a part of our community, even though they may not be physically present. Our Life Unlocked program is designed to ease an individual’s transition from incarceration to re-entry into their community. We meet each program participant at the prison gate or jail door and provide them with a ride home to their loved ones or transitional residence. We present them with a “Welcome Home” Backpack, which includes a hygiene kit, snacks, a copy of a book about Stoic philosophy and a warm meal.

The time between a person’s release from incarceration and the reunion with their loved ones is a key step in their life journey. In some cases, the ride home may represent the first time in decades that program participants will be able to decide what they would like to eat and how they would like to dress. The ride home can be an overwhelming experience for many, as memories of life before incarceration resurface and future dreams are visualized. At Wisdom Unlocked we offer participants the opportunity to share their thoughts and feelings in a supportive setting. During our time together, we listen, encourage and, where appropriate, offer advice to facilitate a positive homecoming. We also provide practical help in the form of first phone calls, instructions on navigating new technologies and contact details for key services. Above all, we remind participants about the power of making good choices and taking responsibility for their actions.  Our support does not end when our participants arrive at their destination. We are committed to providing them and their loved ones with continual support for up to six months following their release. Assistance may include help with obtaining vital documentation, computer and financial literacy, resumé writing, and case management.  

Photo credit: Edmund Lou