Men and women returning from prison have a range of immediate and long-term needs, from employment to housing. But the information about service providers who are friendly to returning citizens is often fragmented and difficult to find. The Henry Institute, in partnership with Calvin’s Geography Department and with support from the Michigan Department of Corrections, is addressing that problem by mapping services at a county level in the state of Michigan.

So far in this multi-year project, we have gathered data on many of the counties in the state of Michigan and created a user-friendly interactive map which is publicly available in beta form at Families, service providers, parole officers, government agencies, and (upon release) returning citizens themselves are already actively using it. To our knowledge, the map is the first of its kind in Michigan, and perhaps nationwide.

The project is ongoing as the map is expanded to new counties, providers are added and updated, and the underlying data on providers is analyzed to identify and explain service “deserts.” An update on the project is available through a number of articles in the Summer 2019 Henry Institute Newsletter.

Research Partners

Project leaders

  • Kevin den Dulk, Henry Institute Director, Calvin University Political Science Department
  • Jason VanHorn, Calvin University Department of Geology, Geography and Environmental Sciences

Student Research Assistants


  • Jason Entingh
  • Amen Gabre
  • Liam Ferraby
  • Debora Haede
  • Grace Lunder
  • Jennifer Randall


  • Liam Ferraby
  • Annalane Miller
  • Skyler Rich


  • Taek Soo Nam


  • Julie Bylsma


  • John Gordon

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