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How it Works

We aim to make our process as smooth as possible, but there are some things to consider before reaching out to us

Amember for harken house organization drinking water

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Who this is for

Hearken House Ministry provides a work/training program for those being released on parole or regular probation from a Pennsylvania county jail or state correctional facility and who strongly desire to change the way of life they have chosen in the past.

Personal behavioral change does not happen in a week, in a month, nor even in a year. That is why those seeking admission into the Hearken House program must commit to attending for twenty-four months. Lasting change requires intensive on-site education and practice. Participants must be willing to receive fundamental personal management and relationship skills relating to keeping promises, being accountable, displaying love, and demonstrating dependability. Participants must be prepared to awaken their own values as they support their peers in finding theirs and be ready to work hard with a positive attitude and to watch out for the next person coming in after them. The most lost among us need to learn to have a life free of addiction, crime, and destruction.

In addition to learning self-governance, participants need to embrace a strong work ethic. Hearken House Ministry is self-funded (not funded by any state or federal agency) and must create its own income to support its program. Therefore, participants must commit to its 24-month work/training program that requires residents to work full-time at the ministry’s warehouse or other job sites. Participants must be able to operate or learn to operate pallet jacks, forklifts, motor vehicles, and other tools and machinery. Participants must also be able to single-person lift fifty pounds and multi-person lift 100 pounds. While contributing as a part of a team, participants receive compensation and learn valuable work skills to be used upon graduating.

Hearken House Ministry is a place for change. If you are serious about getting help to overcome a destructive lifestyle and are determined to work for it, we invite you to apply today.

Aman inside the prison cell


Who this is not for

Hearken House Ministry is not for those seeking a quick fix to a lifetime of poor habits. 

Hearken House Ministry is not for those unwilling to commit to a 24-month in-residence program.

Hearken House Ministry is not for those refusing to submit to rules and policies ( SEE RULES AND POLICIES)

Hearken House Ministry is not for those disbelieving in the capability of a therapeutic community to have positive results for its participants. Our classic therapeutic community is based on one of the most researched and effective models for helping those with long histories of addiction and criminal behavior over the past 70 years.

Hearken House Ministry is not for those doubting the powerful influence of experienced peers being employed in place of therapists or doctors who don’t share the same life experience as our participants.

Hearken House Ministry is not for those unable to live by house rules, keep pace with a rigorous schedule, be honest about their behavior, and perform physically demanding work.


For families and friends

Most likely, you are a family member or a friend visiting this website since your loved one is incarcerated. Although we understand how much you want your loved one to be accepted into the Hearken House program, we need to hear directly from every candidate. We do not accept third-party requests for admission. You may contact us with questions and to facilitate their transportation, but an individual pressured into participation is unlikely to be admitted. The candidate must be able to demonstrate their own motivation and commitment to the program. So have your loved one write to us, requesting an application, or download the application from our website and mail it to your loved one.

1. If you have a family member or friend who could use or help

After our interview process, we will notify the candidate of our decision. If your loved one is admitted into our program, you may provide transportation for your loved one to our facility or we can provide the transportation. However, it is important that strict compliance with our procedures be followed. Any variance from our procedures may jeopardize the candidate’s admission. The distance from the incarceration site to our location will determine the expected time of the candidate’s arrival (usually no later than 6pm – and sufficient time to stop for a meal and/or purchase clothing/hygiene items are calculated into this time).

2. If your family member or friend has been accepted and is being released from incarceration

For the first 30 days, new participants need to connect with their fellow members and orient themselves to the routine of the program. Accordingly, we limit outside distractions during this period. Participants sole focus must be on changing their lives.  Solving problems or maintaining relationships with those outside Hearken House Ministry is better accomplished when the participant has become familiar with the necessary skills to navigate a successful and productive life.

3. Once your family member or friend has arrived at Hearken House Ministry

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