Voices of Reentry

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Here you will find a series of audio interviews conducted with RTC Clients and Volunteers. Every person who comes through our doors has a story, and with these interviews, we hope to provide a deeper understanding of the challenges faced by formerly incarcerated individuals, and what we can do about it as a community.

RTC Computer Room Volunteer, Nita, talks about her experiences working with RTC Participants over the last three years.

RTC Participant talks about his past struggle with homelessness, and how he got back on his feet by accessing the RTC’s employment navigation services.

RTC Participant, Jackie, describes the challenges she faced post-incarceration, and how the RTC helped her overcome them.

RTC Participant, Steve, shares his thoughts on the importance of  every community recognizing the value of reentry services for people returning from incarceration.

RTC Participant, Bill, discusses commitment to sobriety, education, and his mantra “attitude is everything.”

RTC Participant and Volunteer, Alexandria, reflects on her relationship to the organization and her dedication to “being a survivor and not a victim.”

 

 

 

 

Artist Statements: Audio and Photography

Katie Dwyer, Interviewer: It is an enormous honor to be trusted with someone’s story. The individuals I spoke with at the RTC were incredibly giving with their personal experiences, their insights, and the stories of how their lives have transformed.

We spoke in depth about their histories both before and after their times in the criminal justice systems. Many spoke about abusive childhoods, criminal culture, and the pain of social rejection as they worked to get their lives back on track. Their insights about the roots of crime and the work they have done to take responsibility for their actions were deeply insightful and revealing.

I’m grateful to have been part of this project. I was moved by the transformation stories, and am inspired to take further action.

 

Gregory Nolan, Photographer: I always want to capture people at their most authentic. At the Reentry Transition Center, I hoped to photograph the warmth and welcomeness of the space, as well as the genuine connections I witnessed there.

I wanted to take the opposite of a “mug shot”—instead of an image used to identify and objectify, I set out to create portraits of individuals’ personalities and spirits.

My sense of the RTC is that it is a place where people come while at many stages of a difficult journey. Some are searching desperately to fulfill the basic needs, and are still deeply hurt and maybe even desperate as they try to reconstruct their lives. Others, particularly the people I met who had previously been clients and are now volunteers, are in more stable places and are now doing what they can to improve the lives of others. In all cases, I am grateful for those who allowed me to photograph them, and I hope I’ve done them justice with my work.