Unlocking Creativity to Transform Lives

Writers in Residence teaches creative writing to youth who are incarcerated to empower their voices and assist in their re-entry into society.
our model

Creativity as Therapy

Address Unresolved Trauma
Oftentimes youth enter the juvenile justice system with unresolved emotional trauma.
Creative Writing Workshops
Sessions are facilitated by passionate university students who create a safe space for youth to express themselves and work through difficult emotions through engaging prompts.
Ongoing Relationship Building
The real journey begins with re-entry. Youth are often forced to return to unstable environments, and we serve as a support system for them as they embark on this chapter.
Youth Enters Juvenile Justice System
Oftentimes youth enter with unresolved emotional trauma.
Creative Writing Workshops
Facilitated by passionate university students who create a safe space for youth to express themselves and work through difficult emotions through engaging prompts.
Ongoing Relationship Building
The real journey begins with reentry. Youth are often forced to return to unstable environments. We serves as a support system that youth can always return to.
impact

What We've Accomplished

12
separate cohorts across the state of Ohio
1344
residents participated in creative writing workshops
826
pieces of creative writing supported
2146
chapbooks distributed
testimonials

What Residents Say

"I learned about Joy"
Resident at Medina JDC
"It was empowering and a safe space to express myself"
Resident at Seneca County YC
"I like this program because I get to get things off my chest"
Resident at Medina JDC
"I needed Writers in Residence, I got to put what was on my mind while no one saying nothing"
Resident at Seneca County YC
"I learned how to cope by using creative writing and there's multiple opportunities to go far with it"
Resident at Montgomery County CAS
"I know what I need to do to be successful mentally"
Resident at Medina JDC
New

Reentry Mentorship Initiative

Facilitate a smooth transition for youth back into their communities.

artifacts

Works of Creative Writing

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I remember when you came to me when you were at your lowest. When you looked up to me as a lifeline. I remember the times we weren’t eating, and we were taking off some plates both literally and metaphorically. I remember the first I saw your demons when you had that bad trip and you thought cops were coming. I remember our first time running when the plan went south. I remember the times it was 3 to 2. I remember all the times when we looked to each other for help when we had nowhere else to go.

Cosmo
Spring 2021
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Nice Winter No snow Great time watching the wind blow Knippy spring season

J
Spring 2021
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This Photo is of me and my boyfriend holding hands in New York City. IN the photo you can see my right hand which has a bracelet he gave me in it and you can see his left hand and his hand tattoos holding my hand as the camera also points at the buildings as we hold hands. You cant see anything but our hands and what’s in front of us. But after the Photo we danced a little and he picked me up, held me, swung me in his arms and kissed me while everybody stared as they walked past us. During this photo I was very happy and excited to see the city.

Ty
Spring 2021
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I remember when I first met Brandon. It was love at first sight! I Ask him to take me on a 4-wheeler ride, we was gone till midnight! After that we was with each other every day. A couple months later we moved in together. If anybody would get smart with him, or did him wrong, I would get smart with them!

Angel
Spring 2021
Louisville Slugger

My freshman year. Playing baseball for tiffin Columbian. I had never really played at all that year, just wasnt as talented than some other people at the time. But our coach put me first at bat, top of the order, our very last game. So I remember distinctly I took my friends baseball bat it was a Louisville, and I went up. The pitcher threw a changeup and I just absolutely cranked it into left field, I remember it bounced and hit the fence, and I just kept sprinting. I ended up getting a triple, and playing a lot more after that.

Evan
Spring 2021
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They hate on my style but in reality I’m so fresh and so clean oh that man doesn’t like me, tells me I look weak but I know, within me I am strong, but not weak. How they don’t like my music, too bad that doesn’t affect me people say my writing is sloppy but, my grades speak for me.

J
Spring 2021
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I come from a town with seed people But even better donuts I come from playing football on Friday nights Adrenaline pumping through my veins I come from swimming in pools and Granger lake Not even caring about sunburn I come from playing pickup basketball at the Marriott Inn Till the lights go out I come from home cooked meals on the grill And fast food from McDonalds I come from a family who loves me Even in jail But I’m going to create my own path And help others along the way

J
Spring 2021
Clean up on Aisle 3

When I shoot the ball I feel like Harden but we all know I’m Lebron James. No one can guard me but if they do they gonna need some new ankles. I got ice in my veins I’m like Lamelo I’ll pull up from anywhere. You reach I teach clean up on aisle 3 is what they preach.

Anthony
Spring 2021
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I’m in the air like I’m free like everything I’ve ever wanted to be is here. Everybody I care about My Girl Eva is pulling upchurch By the car. She throws everyone I love and they come Crashing on and I’m filled with joy.

Grace
Spring 2021
Read MOre
Created by Paul Gehrig