United Returning Citizens

United Returning Citizens (URC) is a start-up, non-profit corporation that serves the Youngstown, Ohio Tri-County area. URC was originally founded for formerly incarcerated citizens, but upon offering our services to this large demographic we found that an even larger demographic needed the services that we offer, thus, extending our services not just to the formerly incarcerated, but to the entire community which has been affected by mass incarceration.

Our organization provides job search and training, life and financial literacy skills and transitional and stable housing primarily for citizens reentering society from correctional facilities. As there is a well-established correlation between joblessness and homelessness, and the overall impact on daily existence, we seek to provide a holistic approach to enable all citizens who are otherwise disadvantaged and disenfranchised to become productive contributing members of society.

URC understands that employment is not a one size fits all solution, so we also offer an array of entrepreneurial programs and services.

Along with other services, we offer case management which frequently includes: money management, credit analysis, educational plans, character building courses, school enrollment assistance, housing (transitional, permanent & home ownership) and lastly, we address PTSD commonly associated with incarceration.

Women as Returning Citizens preparing to become job-ready and seeking for upward career mobility through training and education. URC has been formed as a 501(c)(3) not for profit entity. The purpose of this organization is to offer returning citizens housing as well as teach skills that allow them to become self-sufficient and independent.

Funds for the organization will come from many sources including: in house fundraising efforts, local government funds, foundation grants, corporate and individual donations, and money from the federal government.

Like many local organizations, URC assists with employment, with the major difference being the depth of our employment program. While a bit unconventional URC’s approach is to provide all the services that we offer holistically. As a part of our holistic approach, URC offers employment services with a core focus on developing the soft skills needed to transition back into the workforce. We assist with resume creation, job search and training, application completion, mock interviews, interview attire, H.R. attainment i.e. birth certificates, State ID’s, & social security cards), transportation solutions, and lastly, we assist with promotions and advancement once employment has been secured.

How You Can Help

Community members can make an impact by helping United Returning Citizens by donating or volunteering their time.

Donations help fund operating costs and improve the ability of URC to provide the most efficient services to those who benefit from its work. The organization is raising funds in an effort to attain operating sufficiency and to increase its overall budget.

Credit card donations can be made online at URCYoungstown.org/donate, and checks can be mailed to United Returning Citizens, 507 Oak Hill Ave., Youngstown, Ohio 44502. All donations are tax deductible.

Volunteers can visit URC during its operating hours Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday through Friday or by calling 330 406 0827 and meeting with Executive Director Dionne Dowdy or her staff.

“I like to see where you fit in,” Dowdy says of the organization’s volunteers. “What is your gift? What is your strength? And whatever it is, that’s what you can use to help United Returning Citizens.”