In 2021, Mural Arts Philadelphia’s Restorative Justice Program, whose mission is to transform individuals, victims, and communities divided by the criminal justice system, launched a new Women’s reentry pilot program. This arts and wellness-focused paid reentry program, modeled after The Guild, serves the unique needs of returning women and their families, including both personal and professional development, supportive services, resource-sharing, mentorship, relationship-building, and entrepreneurship – with a focus on job readiness.
This program was structured with the support of justice-impacted women to create a holistic and safe environment for program participants.
Through mural making, carpentry, and other creative projects, program participants are guided by artists and other skilled professionals to transform their neighborhoods and themselves. Job readiness, through the development of life skills and mentorship, is an essential element of the curriculum. Participants have also built personal and professional growth plans, which include communications, teamwork, critical thinking, problem-solving, digital etiquette, and essential job entry skills like résumé-building and interview preparation to help participants secure future employment.
“Seen and Heard”
Leaving a legacy. That’s what these resilient women want to do. Led by Women’s Reentry Pilot Program Coordinator Rasheeda Bagwell, the participants take a holistic approach to transforming their lives based on three primary pillars:
- Job Readiness
- Art Inclusivity
Sankofa Healing Studio
Fierce Advocacy Fund
Neubauer Family Foundation