We Believe in
Second Chances

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful citizens can change the world.  Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.

Margaret Mead

About Friends Outside

Group of mothers with children

Since 1955, Friends Outside has been a visionary, pro-active child and family advocate helping families, children and incarcerated individuals cope with the trauma of arrest and incarceration, find a new direction, and move forward with their lives.

Our numerous years of experience working with adults and young people involved in the criminal justice system have provided us with the necessary tools to address the special needs of families and children.

We are a nonprofit, community-based organization governed by a Board of Directors to ensure our programs and services are aligned with our mission, vision and values, and that the highest standards of stewardship are maintained.

Our Mission

Friends Outside offers caring, evidence-based services to adults and youth who are incarcerated, reentering the community or at risk, so that they, their families and neighborhoods can be safe and thrive.

Our Vision

All those impacted by incarceration live with dignity as contributing members of our communities

Friends Outside Values


We actively support the rights of those we serve and bring about change by influencing attitudes, laws, policies and practices


We believe that our success requires working together with others toward a shared mission and goals

Commitment to Excellence.

We strive for the highest level of quality in everything that we do, committed to evidence-based practice, Standards of Performance, and supporting qualify of service through data collection and evaluation.


We acknowledge cultural values and support cultural competence in our staff, aware that each individual may be influenced by more than one culture at a time and cultural competence begins with our own cultural awareness and cultural influences.


We celebrate the differences in gender and sexuality, including lesbian,bisexual, gay, transgendered and questioning people, and recognize the significance of those differences in navigating life’s challenges and opportunities,


We understand the impact of trauma on shaping a life trajectory, supporting practices that are understanding, healing and hopeful throughout the lifespan.


We promote independence, resourcefulness and personal responsibility in those we serve


We believe that there is strength in diversity and appreciate all individuals for their differences in characteristics, styles, backgrounds, motivations, values, and aspirations


We respect the individual worth, dignity and rights of those we serve

Social Justice.

We hold that all persons have the right to benefit equally from the resources afforded by societyand theenvironment and deserve equal treatment under thelawregardless ofclass, gender,race,religion,citizenship,ageorsexual orientation


We promote public trust by using our resources wisely, by holding ourselves to the highest standards and by being transparent in terms of our financial affairs and actions