Restoring Promise, an initiative of the Vera Institute of Justice and MILPA, is creating housing units grounded in dignity for young adults in prison. We help transform correctional culture through training, presentations, workshops, and healing circles—setting a new tone for the entire system. Young adults participate in meaningful daily activities, experience healing, cultivate an ideology of self-determination, and restore relationships with family and community. Mentors (people over the age of 25) support them in their personal growth and staff undergo intensive training to become agents of change within the system.

The result: increased safety and stronger sense of purpose among staff and incarcerated people. In each housing unit, prison, and state we have worked, we hear incarcerated people, corrections staff, and agency leadership reflect “we can’t and won’t go back.”

Learn more on Restoring Promise’s website.

Project Objectives

  • Designing restorative housing units for incarcerated young adults that prioritize family engagement, self-expression, peer support, personal growth and development, education, and career readiness.

  • Supporting six states in the implementation and scaling of this new model for young adults.

  • Enhancing the ways in which statewide departments of corrections partner with young people, family, and community in the design, implementation, and ongoing operations of the model.