Restoring Dignity and Resources to Former Inmates

Joseph House provides and promotes a welcoming and restorative community for formerly incarcerated individuals. We recognize the dignity of us all, and, for this reason, we are dedicated to accompanying the formerly incarcerated on their journey back into society at large. We believe that integral to this journey is recognizing the systemic factors and histories of trauma that affect those we serve. In this method we call accompaniment, we focus on developing relationships with the larger community to build a more just and merciful society. As a mission of the Diocese of the Pensacola -Tallahassee Catholic Church, Joseph House helps to restore the dignity of those who are the most vulnerable to homelessness and re-offending by offering comprehensive services. Meeting men incarcerated and living in the brutal conditions of solitary confinement, we recognized many feared the notion of freedom rather than welcomed it because they had nowhere to go. We thought, one by one, we can make their lives better. We can make the world better. What we have discovered is many of these men make our community better when they can finally breathe the fresh air of peace and goodness. Our lives are better with them walking alongside us.

Formerly incarcerated individuals are ten times more likely to experience homelessness than the general population. When someone is homeless, they are five times more likely to re-offend. Last year over 26,000 individuals left Florida’s prisons and jails. Statistics like this are why Joseph House exists. We aspire to change the narrative on reentry services by creating a community surrounding those reentering society. For the past four years the organization has created a vibrant and therapeutic community to walk alongside their residents as they begin to dream about their new lives. Providing holistic residential services for those who leave Florida’s prisons and are most at risk of experiencing homelessness and recidivism is one of our priorities.

Funded by Homelessness (August 2022)