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Project RETURN

Innovative Programs

“If it wasn’t for Project RETURN, there’s a good chance that I would’ve given up.” Those words from Monti, a Project RETURN client who was formerly incarcerated, sum up the reason that Project RETURN exists. The organization's mission is to help individuals leaving prison make a positive and permanent return to their community, family, and friends. For over 40 years, Project RETURN has walked alongside formerly incarcerated people, assisting with employment, housing, and other needs to support their successful re-entry.

Primary Focus Area: Meeting the needs of incarcerated people returning to community

Lutheran Affiliation: ELCA

Location: 2821 Vel R Phillips Ave, Suite 223, Milwaukee, WI 53212


Funding will support:

  • "Job readiness, training, and placement - For most people coming to Project RETURN, finding a job is their first priority. We link people to job training programs, build their job readiness and job seeking skills, and provide job placement services. We also assist clients with related needs, such as obtaining clothing, specialty work tools, and transportation. Additionally we assist in enrolling people in vocational training programs.

  • Holistic support and services - Our staff helps people obtain basic necessities, including food and clothing. We provide housing referrals. We offer three AODA Support Groups each week, led by our Certified Substance Abuse Counselor.

  • Circles of Support - 'Circles give me the energy I need to keep fighting my uphill battle.' This comment from a formerly incarcerated individual points to the positive role that Circles of Support play in helping people address their re-entry challenges. Using a program model proven to reduce recidivism rates, these small groups meet regularly to provide a stable, supportive network to individuals returning from incarceration. Members of each Circle include formerly incarcerated people, at least one trained Circle Keeper, and community volunteers." (Submitted by Project RETURN)

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