For nearly 20 years, New Connections has helped women get a fresh start, and worked toward a society where incarceration is rare, brief, and non-recurring.
Our mission is to interrupt the poverty-to-prison pipeline and promote community reintegration after incarceration.
To do this, we offer:
- Community engagement and education
- Participatory Defense
- Pre-release support
- Supportive shelter for women
- Family reunification
- Resource coaching
- Positive support for individuals of all sexual and gender identities
- Leadership development with justice-impacted people
- Advocacy and referral services
- Outreach to justice-involved people who are experiencing homelessness
- Commitment to anti-racist policy and practice
At New Connections we actively invite and honor diversity of people, identities, ideas, cultures and spiritual traditions.
- A person’s right to dignity and self-enhancement
- Authentic community partnerships
- Respect, compassion, honesty and humanity
- Integrity, accountability and professionalism in all that we do
- Each person’s potential for positive change
The Hilltop Urban Village was started by the late Father Bill Bichsel, known to all of us as simply “Bix.” Together with many volunteers, he worked for decades to gather the land, materials, and other resources needed to develop a community of compassion in the heart of our hilltop Tacoma neighborhood.
Some of the neighborhood’s properties are now under the care of St. Leo Parish. Located a half block away, they have been a treasured ally and continuous supporter of the many initiatives and projects incubated here. It would be difficult to list the many other faith-based organizations, community agencies, businesses, tradespeople, and individuals Bix recruited to create and support this intentional community.
Other neighborhood properties are under the care of the Tacoma Catholic Worker. Founded in 1989, the organization manages properties such as Guadalupe House, Jean’s House of Peace, Jesuit Volunteer House, Lewis Jones House, the White House, the Green House, as well as the Community Commons and Guadalupe Gardens. The contemplative Peace Garden — built on a vacant lot between the houses — was completed in 2019.
New Connections operates and maintains Irma’s Place and Annie’s Cottage. We are not charged for the use of the properties. In addition to this generous donation, Tacoma Catholic Worker members welcome and support our residents in their return to community life, and continue to be an essential partner and ally to New Connections and those we serve.