Volunteers are the foundation of the BCJC. The Justice Center relies on more than 40 skilled, trained volunteers to provide many of our services. Volunteers serve as Restorative Justice Panelists, Circles of Support and Accountability (COSA) members, Safe Driving Program facilitators, and more.
Restorative Justice Panel Members are volunteers from all walks of life who dedicate 2 hours each month to conduct meetings with people who have caused harm in the community using restorative practices and principals. These informal, structured conversations lead to an agreement of activities and plan of action for the person who caused harm to make amends with affected parties, restore relations with the community, and keep from committing future offenses.
The BCJC runs seven restorative justice panels, each comprised of five volunteers, to address cases involving retail theft, simple assault, and negligent operation of a vehicle, and other charges. Cases are referred to the Justice Center by the courts or as part of an individual’s probation.
If you are interested in learning more about becoming a volunteer panelist please refer to our Volunteer Job Description or contact Jackie Trepanier at 802-251-8141 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Returning to the community after incarceration can be very difficult for both the person who is leaving prison and those who have been affected by their actions. For those who have been incarcerated, some of the challenges include finding a place to live, finding a job, transportation, and reuniting with family. Those who have been impacted by that person’s actions have needs as well, such as information, safety, and reassurance they won’t be harmed again.
A Circle of Support and Accountability (COSA) forms a circle of 3-5 volunteers a formerly incarcerated person coming back to the community. Volunteers commit to meeting for one hour a week for at least a year. These relationships support people to meet the many challenges of “reentry.”
If you are interested in learning more about becoming a volunteer COSA member please contact Jim Cecere at 802-380-4364 or email@example.com