Communities often address crime through a cycle of prison time and release. This cycle leads them back to old habits, separated from their families and a drain on tax payer dollars. That is why The Turning Leaf Project (TLP) exists—to work with individuals who cycle in and out of the criminal justice system in order to provide the structure needed after release from jail.
The TLP was founded by Amy Barch, 36, founder and director, who has had a passion for working with incarcerated folk since her 20s.
“I became very interested in why people commit crimes and how we can effectively respond to that behavior as a community,” Barch said.
When Barch moved to Charleston in 2010 she was unable to find any meaningful volunteer opportunities in the field of reentry and rehabilitation for the incarcerated population. This led to her approaching the jail to teach classes in the evenings a few times a week.