Sheila Menezes

Sheila Menezes

MS, CPCC, and VOEG Facilitator

Sheila Menezes, MS, CPCC, helps leaders and teams transform disconnection into connection and harm into healing, fostering authentic and sustainable relationships to shift group culture. Her approach centers on effective, empathic communication, equity, and transformative justice.

Since 2015, Sheila has supported and collaborated with hundreds of incarcerated individuals through the Safer Communities Project's year-long in-prison compassionate communication program. This program uses a 48-week curriculum to teach practical skills in compassionate communication, facilitating a shift from blame and judgment to emotional and somatic intelligence, self-awareness, accountability, empathy, self-compassion, authentic expression, and community building. Additionally, Sheila has facilitated trauma-healing groups for the Victim-Offender Education Group (VOEG) with the Insight Prison Project since 2016. She serves on the Advisory Board of Transformative Programming Works (TPW), a coalition of formerly incarcerated leaders and 96 community-based organizations (CBOs) offering healing and restorative justice programs in California prisons.

Sheila is the founder of Compassionate Return LLC, which offers leadership coaching, communication training, strategic facilitation, and emotional intelligence assessments and debriefs. Her work focuses on enhancing connection, clarity, and collaboration skills to build empathetic team cultures. She is a certified coach through the Co-Active Training Institute (CTI), a candidate for Nonviolent Communication (NVC) certification in the first BIPOC cohort, and a certified Emotional and Social Intelligence EQ-i 2.0/EQ 360 practitioner. She is trained in Gabor Maté's Compassionate Inquiry approach to trauma healing and holds a certificate from Harvard for the Leadership, Organizing, and Action: Leading Change Program led by Faculty Chair Marshall Ganz. Sheila believes that leading with love creates change.

Reentry Conference Event Page

10:30 am - 12:00 pm
Hall C | St. Mary's Cathedral - Event Center

The Healing Power of the Victim Offender Education Group (VOEG)

Lenard Rubio
Victim Offender Education Group (VOEG) Facilitator and Executive Director of Insight Prison Project, a division of Five Keys Schools and Programs


Radha Stern
Survivor, Healing Partner, and Author

Sheila Menezes
MS, CPCC, and VOEG Facilitator

Thedo Butler
Victim Offender Education Group (VOEG) graduate


This panel will discuss the experiences of a survivor who has participated in our Surrogate Survivor Impact Panels as well as a direct Victim Offender Dialogue (VOD), two VOEG graduates, and two VOEG facilitators. Insight Prison Project is a division of Five Keys. The VOEG program is currently being offered at San Quentin Rehabilitation Center, Pelican Bay State Prison, R.J. Donovan Correctional Facility, Valley State Prison, California Men’s Colony, California Institution for Men, the California Institution for Women, the San Francisco Juvenile Justice Center, and in four correctional institutions in Colorado. We are currently recruiting to train VOEG facilitators to replicate to the Central California Women’s Facility in Chowchilla, Correctional Training Facility in Soledad, and Salinas Valley State Prison in Soledad.