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Restorative Justice Housing Ontario

Safe, supportive and sustainable housing

Restorative Justice Housing Ontario (RJHO) provides safe, secure housing to individuals in transition after their recent release from prison. Our plan is to break the cycle of homelessness and incarceration, one person at a time.

With housing secured, community integration commences. Our residents have the stable foundation needed to begin rebuilding their lives, doing their own healing work, and seeking employment or volunteer positions.

We launched our first house for men leaving prison in February 2020. As of January 2024, RJHO operates five houses in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), with the capacity to provide affordable, supportive, and stable housing for up to 21 men and women leaving the correctional system.

 

Adult and child hands holding paper house, family home and homeless shelter concept

Our mission

The cycle of homelessness and incarceration must be broken. By working to create safe, supportive home environments for people leaving prison, RJHO works to reduce the number of people who return to prison. To do this, we're working hard to find more houses and to increase the support we provide to our residents. To learn about the challenges we face and our work to overcome them, read more about our mission.

How you can help

Do you know of an available house we can rent? Our ideal option includes at least four bedrooms and two to three bathrooms. Please send any leads to Joseph Lauren.

We welcome donations, as we do not receive any official government support. Learn more about how to donate.

Interested in volunteering? We'd love to have you. Join our community of volunteers today.

Apply for RJHO housing

Are you looking for a safe, supportive place to stay for yourself or someone else?

Fill out our application form. We'll be in touch as soon as we can to see if an RJHO house is the right fit for you.


Read our latest news and stories

Two in five people with history of homelessness and police involvement cite justice system as reason for housing loss

RJHO program director, Joseph Lauren, was interviewed for a recent Globe and Mail article about the link between justice involvement and homelessness.

Letter to the Editor, The Globe and Mail

RJHO chair Jim Harbell's Letter to the Editor in response to the article “Nearly 20% of inmates homeless upon release from Ontario jails, data show” (November 27).

Report: The Revolving Door of Homelessness and Ontario’s Justice System

After canvassing 175 people with a history of homelessness and justice involvement, the John Howard Society released a full report of their findings. Read it here.

Restorative Justice Housing Ontario opens a new home for women

RJHO has leased a home in Toronto to be used as residence for women who are coming out of prison but have no place to live. This is the first home for women to be operated by RJHO.


What is restorative justice?

Put simply, restorative justice is an approach to justice that focuses on repairing the harm that results from criminal actions. It holds offenders accountable for their actions and affirms that repairing the harm they have caused should be a collaborative process. Restorative justice also encourages offenders, victims and communities to work together to find solutions and take steps toward positive change.

But how can offenders engage in restorative justice if they don't have a stable place in the community to begin with? How can they repair any harm they've caused if all their focus is on affording, or even finding, a safe place to sleep?

This is why we created RJHO - to help ex-offenders find safe, supportive and sustainable housing so they can start making up for harm caused in the past and work toward positive relationships with their communities in the future.


Get involved

Let's have a conversation about how you or your group can help find safe, supportive and sustainable housing for an ex-prisoner in need.