Restorative Justice

Restorative justice starts with the conviction that confronting crime or other conflict does not mean merely punishing people for breaking the rules. Rather, restorative justice means that we must address harms to specific human relationships and the broader community. It requires that we recognize what those harms are, understand their causes and effects, and identify the needs and obligations of victims, offenders, and the broader community. A just response to crime is complex and requires insights from multiple ways of looking at the world.

Calvin University is committed to using restorative justice as our guide for engaging with the topic of criminal justice. You can explore some of our efforts on this site.

“The road to healing and reconciliation is never easy; it requires humility and courage.
We are all called to walk this road, but we do not walk the road alone.”
- Aaron W., Calvin Prison Initiative student

 Ongoing Projects 

CPI student raising hand in class

Calvin Prison Initiative (CPI)

The CPI offers a five-year educational program in Faith and Community Leadership to the inmates at the Richard A. Handlon Correctional Facility in Iona, Michigan. Since 2015, the CPI has provided hope, dignity, and an opportunity for prisoners. Learn more >>

Returning Citizens Services (RCS) Map

RCS provides an online mapping application that helps men and women returning from prison to locate friendly service providers. The RCS map is the first of its kind in Michigan and will continue to expand to new counties, as new data is collected. View Map >>

Jason VanHorn presenting on the RCS Mapping Application
Restorative Justice Conference logo

Restorative Justice Conference

Last hosted at Calvin College in 2018, the West Michigan Restorative Justice Conference strives to achieve greater awareness and participation in the restorative justice movement. The conference is made possible by CPI's Restorative Justice Club. Read Article >>