There are different resources for you and your family after you get released from prison. Some of these programs help you and your family prepare for the reentry process. Other resources help you and your family once you are released. Knowing these resources can help you make a smooth transition out of prison and into the community.
Are there resources for food security?
Yes. Justice-impacted people can qualify for SNAP or SSI benefits. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is a state-by-state program. In contrast, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a federal program. Generally, you qualify for SNAP if you are working but live below the poverty line. You can qualify for SSI if you are over the age of 65, blind, disabled or pay into Social Security. Every state has contact information for you if you want to look further into these benefits.
Are there resources to help find housing for me and my family?
Yes. But, it is harder to qualify. The Housing and Urban Development office has a voucher program called Section 8. Section 8 housing helps very low-income individuals and families. Additionally, Section 8 does not exclude those who committed felonies. But, it will be more difficult to qualify with charges on your record. Further, rules are different in some cities and states. You can call your local housing agency to see if you qualify. There are also nonprofit organizations that can help you find housing. One example of a nonprofit organization is Volunteers of America.
What about substance abuse treatment?
Yes. There are free resources for substance abuse treatment. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has a hotline. The number is open 24 hours a day, every day of the year. When you call, they can help you find resources and information for you and your family. SAMHSA works with anyone throughout the country.
Is there somewhere to help me prepare for my next job?
Yes. There are resources to help prepare for your next job or find your next job after you get released from prison. Certain nonprofit organizations give information about job searches and companies to consider. One example is Help for Felons. But, there are also programs that can help you find employment while still in prison. The BOP has reentry programs that help you get job training and education. These programs prepare you to apply for jobs once you are released.
Are there support groups available for my family and I?
Yes. But, it depends on where you live. Support groups can be in-person and help you readjust to life back in your community. But, you can find groups on the Internet. An example of an organization is Success Reentry. Success Reentry is a local organization that has support groups for justice-impacted people.
There are resources for both you and your family after your release. Some can come from the government, and others can come from nonprofit organizations. But, you can always find more resources through the Internet. For example, there are organizations that compile lists of resources based on where you live.