Windows to work (W2W) utilizes a Cognitive Behavioral Intervention curriculum to help justice involved individuals address their criminogenic needs that can lead to recidivism. The program’s goals are to help individuals improve social interactions, to increase employment opportunities and improve job retention, and to reduce recidivism after release from incarceration.
W2W activities begin 3 to 12 months prior to release from incarceration and continue for approximately one year after release from prison. In addition to providing Cognitive Behavioral Intervention services, the 12 week program curriculum reviews general work skills and expectations, identifies community resources, and provides assistance with the job seeking process including the creation of resumes and cover letters as well as job application assistance. Once released from prison, the individual works one on one with W2W staff to conduct job seeking and job placement activities, receives referrals and assistance with connecting to community resources, and receives seamless assistance attaching to a wide range of regional training programs provided through FoodShare Employment and Training, WIOA, Madison College and other community based organizations.
The program provides financial assistance to assist individuals with their transition back into our local communities. Financial assistance is provided on a case-by-case basis and can be utilized for work-related clothing, transportation, housing and education.
For more information about this program, please contact Wendy Tougas, Windows to Work Coach at (608) 242-4546.
When Jonathan was in the final year of a three year sentence, for possession of controlled substances and multiple theft charges relating to his drug addiction, he enrolled in Windows to Work while he was incarcerated at Oakhill Correctional Institution. Jonathan enrolled because he really wanted to make significant changes with his life upon his release.
Once Jonathan was released he attended Windows to Work Job Club at the Dane County Job Center on a weekly basis. Jonathan's only work history was with a family member's company. Though he had the option to go back to work there, it was an unhealthy environment for him. Luckily Jonathan was able to use the company as a reference. Jonathan also faced additional challenges as he attempted to stay away from "the old crowd" that would lead him back to drug use and self-destruction.
About three weeks after his release and a lot of hard work applying for jobs Jonathan was offered an entry-level position with a local manufacturing company making $12.50 per hour. Jonathan made a decision to make his job his first priority and succeed in learning his position and anything else his employer would teach him. After nine months of dedication to himself and his job Jonathan was offered a promotion and a pay increase to $14/hour! At the one year anniversary of being released from prison Jonathan is celebrating his job success and reaching his goals.