We have learned that the best candidates for investing our time, resources and energy are those who are willing to do anything and everything to change their situation, attitudes, lifestyle and actions. This is determined not just through an application and assessment process, but also through personal interviewing. Not only will our most successful clients be able to tell us they want to change, they will also be able to show us through various indicators, such as effective thought and planning processes in the pre-release phase of incarceration, their level of self-awareness and their transparency about outstanding personal issues that they need to confront.
Recidivism, or the rate at which a person returns to prison within a measured timeframe, is an important indicator of our success as an organization. We will track the recidivism percentage of our clients to determine the effectiveness of meeting our mission and vision while seeking funding sources. We will also measure the outcomes of client pre-release programming and programming objectives on the outside.
When TRI picks up returning citizens from jails and prison on the day of their release and walks alongside them throughout their reintegration journey in the months and years that follow, we are helping our neighbors—both you and them. Through our extensive aftercare services and collaborations, we are reducing homelessness, empowering individuals to become productive members of society again, strengthening families, and reducing recidivism which equates to a significant cost savings to all of us. Setting aside the societal benefits and successful re-integration of the most underserved population in our nation, just the monetary savings are quite significant. If our Longmont-based operation reduces recidivism by just 20%, which is on the low end of the range when compared to similar programs elsewhere in the country, this will result in savings of $350,000-$600,000 per year in incarceration expenses. We are reconciling people to themselves, their loved ones and their communities which equates to a healthier society. That is why we say that helping offenders and returning citizens is not just the smart thing to do, it is the right thing.
The revolving door of incarceration is of epidemic proportions when it comes to the level of brokenness experienced in individuals, families and our society. Given the magnitude of this problem, there is no entity or institution better poised to help solve the issues surrounding incarceration than faith communities who encompass not only a worldview of hope, forgiveness, and transformation but who also have vital resources and networks. We recruit volunteers from faith communities all over Boulder County. We offer our clients involvement in these communities on a strictly voluntary basis. In many of the churches with whom we are partnered, there are opportunities for clients to attend worship, educational programming, AA and other 12-step programs as well as other support groups. We welcome involvement from all faiths and denominations.
We believe in building relationships that allow us to partner in ways that not only fulfill our mission and vision but create meaningful investments, changing the lives of everyone involved in collaborative efforts. In our startup phase, we have generated donations from individuals, faith communities and institutions. As good stewards of what has been graciously given to us, we seek to diversify our revenue generating sources while also ensuring we utilize funds so that our mission and vision are accomplished, always asking, “Is this the best use of the resources entrusted to us?”