Volunteers offer support for people who recently left jail

Volunteers offer support for people...

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) - A group made up of volunteers in our area is hoping to make a difference for people who have recently left jail or prison.

The Circle of Support Group is made up of four to five volunteers who meet for one hour a week with a person who recently left jail or prison.

Their main goal is to offer encouragement and help people make a successful transition from incarceration to everyday life.

One of those people is Jordan Holter, who spent nearly six years behind bars.

As a recovering meth addict, Holter began seeking trust in people who would listen to his story.

He joined Circle of Support in 2014 in hopes to get help with recovering.

"There has been times when I've wanted to relapse and I would just tell them that and they would ask why and what's going on and how has your week been," Holter said.

He says volunteers would ultimately encourage him to find different ways in dealing with his addiction.

"I knew that I had to change my way of thinking so I let go of my past."

Group coordinator Cheryl Peters says the Circle of Support was founded as a way to help those who are stuck in the justice system and can't find a way out.

"Most of these folks have broken all ties with people who used to trust them and believe in them, they've just messed up so often that even their families have given up."

She says the group is also a response to a justice system that could use some improvements.

"Our justice system needs refining,  and we need to come at these with a different perspective, look at it differently."

Holter may still have some battles to fight, but he knows he doesn't have to fight them alone.

"I wanted to step out of my comfort zone and that's what this was and it's one of the most rewarding things I've done."

Holter graduated from Western Technical Saturday with a degree in Manufacturing Systems Maintenance.

Circle of Support groups decide which time and location works best for their circle and core members.

To learn more about Circle of Support, call 608-519-3180.


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