OAR Today


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OAR, a community-based restorative justice organization, blends compassion and accountability to assist offenders in leading productive and responsible lives, to the benefit of all.

The OAR movement began in 1968 when a group of concerned Citizens led by Jay Worrall Jr. responded to a prison riot in Richmond, Virginia.

These citizens envisioned an improved criminal justice system in which incarcerated individuals are assisted by trained volunteers from the community. Through ongoing contact with community volunteers it was hoped that incarcerated individuals would be empowered with information and encouraged to transform their experiences toward responsible and productive lives. The ultimate goal was to break the costly cycle of recidivism and create a more just system.

This nationally recognized model program was incorporated as OAR/USA in 1973 and currently has affiliated but autonomous offices in four states.

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