History of The Bridge
The Bridge and its programs grew out of a church community’s desire to provide greater follow-up after incarceration to help ex-offenders adjust to reintegration in the community.
1970-1990 – Pastoral support was provided in the Hamilton Wentworth Detention Centre but a need for more support was obvious. An Ecumenical Committee helped to structure a Board of Directors in 1988 and the Bridge Program was finally incorporated in 1990.
1990-2001 – Self-Help Groups functioned within HWDC and at Calvin Grace Church with support for Discharge Planning. In 1994, the Family Support group was established.
2001-2008 – Purchase of the current Bridge House at 319 Barton Street. This site was established and officially opened in 2004. This allowed The Bridge to offer transitional housing.
2008-Present – An Executive Director was appointed in 2008, a permanent Discharge Planner in 2009, an Occupational Therapist in 2013, and an Educational Facilitator in 2015. See our full list of programs here.
April 2014 – The Bridge celebrated it’s 25th Annual General Meeting. We would like to thank the many people that have worked so hard and dedicated their time and effort in the past to assure that the goal of reintegrating clients back into society is accomplished.
It is hoped that The Bridge will become an organization well-known for providing excellent services to people being released from incarceration, enabling them to reintegrate back into the community.