The United States has the highest prison population of any country in the world. Over 2.2 million men, women and juveniles are incarcerated today, with nearly 5 million on either probation or parole. Each year, more than 600,000 inmates are released into the general public. Approximately 70% of all inmates released will reoffend within 5 years of being released.
When released, inmates move into our cities and our neighborhoods. Unfortunately, many struggle finding housing and jobs. Due to a lack of funding, in-prison programs have been cut or are rendered ineffective, as a result, many inmates lack basic life skills and often struggle living a normal life.
Source: US Department of Justice and the National Justice Institute
513FREE is actively working to break the cycle of incarceration by building Christ-centered relationships and programs for those at-risk of going, those currently in, and those being released from prison. Our success not only benefits those we serve, but also our communities as a whole. Less crime means less victims. These are the four ways we work to break the cycle of incarceration:
We share life-changing hope with Chippewa Valley youth through the support of
Prison Outreach Events
We perform in-prison outreach events where we share the Gospel through music and teaching of the Word
We work with former inmates to help assist with job placement, life skills and assimilation into Christ-centered community
It's not how you take action, but rather that you take action. There are three simple ways to get involved with 513FREE. First, you can join our prayer team. We believe in the power of prayer, it's the heartbeat of our ministry. Secondly, you can volunteer with us. We've seen time and time again that volunteering in prison ministry brings purpose and life-change. Finally, by giving to 513FREE, you enable us to continue to share the Gospel with the incarcerated and those at-risk. We hope that you consider partnering with us on this great mission.
Jake Stanley (Inmate, Wisconsin)
"The Pen Project gives me and many others the ability to make a difference, a positive way to express themselves through their talents, gifts, and abilities. Many of us who have been in rough situations are now able to reach out to people going through similar circumstances. The “love” and “hope” that is found within the pages continue to encourage, convict, and provoke thoughtful reflection. It is a conversation starter that leads to formation of new friendships and opens doors for evangelism. I have experienced the impact it has on the lives of young men at Rawhide Boys Ranch, as they read it and contribute submissions for the purpose driven magazine."
The Magazine and the love that radiates from 513FREE is contagious. It gives many of us a new focus, a deeper hope, a role of responsibility, and a bolder passion to make a difference. If it was not for The Pen Project and the relentless work of 513FREE, many gifts, talents, and abilities would still be unfound and unemployed."
Tom Maxwell (Prison Fellowship Ministries)
"Although your music was excellent almost everyone commented on the way that your integrity and true humility came through on and off stage. Not only was your music a witness but your decorum which in this time of self absorption is rare. You all were truly a gift to us both inside and out.”
Jeffery Anderson (Chaplain, Algoa Correctional Center, Missouri)
“513FREE's faith, zeal for God, and passion for what they do was evident as they gave themselves to the men who came to hear them. It was great to watch these young men give of themselves generously and sacrificially for the sake of the offenders, and to see the offenders respond in like manner. The band played for nearly two (2) hours, and as I assisted their loading and exit from our camp, though they were tired and hungry, their attitude and witness was just then same as it was when they arrived.”