Shammah Returning Citizens
Social reintegration is often understood as the support given to offenders during their reentry into society following imprisonment. A broader definition, however, encompasses a number of interventions undertaken following an arrest to divert offenders away from the criminal justice system to an alternative measure, including a restorative justice process or suitable treatment. It includes imposing community-based sanctions rather than imprisonment in an attempt to facilitate the social reintegration of offenders within the community, rather than subjecting them to the marginalizing and harmful effects of imprisonment. For those who are sentenced to imprisonment, it includes correctional programs in prison, and aftercare interventions (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, 2006). In recent years, the post-release, community-based component of these interventions has been variously referred to as "aftercare", "transitional care", "reentry" or "reentry support", reintegration, or resettlement. Some post-release interventions may begin while the offender is still incarcerated with the intent of facilitating post-release adjustment.
Goal of Shammah Initiative
The Shammah Initiative - help offenders make personal changes in their lives by encouraging them to learn about their strengths and areas that need improvement. They:
- Teach personal interaction and development skills.
- Allow offenders to build life skills.
- Promote positive and healthy lifestyle choices.
- Teach offenders how to use their leisure time constructively and in a pro-social manner.
- Target factors that may impact offenders' ability to successfully transition back into the community.