Category Archives: improvement

To Prison for Poverty

This is happening today ,right now. People are being jailed and forced to pay exorbitant amounts of monies for minor crimes to line the pockets of for profit business.  Alabama ,Georgia, and Florida . Let your congressman/woman  and Governor know that this is not acceptable. New legislation needs to be passed.

Advertisements

Life has knocked you down, but you can get up.

 

Many times in our journey life can deal us some unexpected blows. It seems that we are blindsided by the vicissitudes(love that word) of life.  It might seem that this time that you are knocked down is the last straw. But know that you can get up. You can prevail.  Don’t feel as if you have to do it alone. Reach Up,Reach Out. Let some one know that you are ready  to move forward, ready for change.

Real Success

Real Success

 

 

Life

10154557_551244341641529_1933793265_n

10154914_295235140640341_8155385833212718328_n

Returning Home -Meet Ms. Venessa Jones

Ms Venessa Jones gives an interview regarding her participation in the Empowering Choices Jail Program at the Tuscaloosa County Jail. She was an active participant. She currently participates in the Empowering Choices Alternative 2 Incarceration community program and serves as a volunteer with the organization. The ECA2I program is a 14 week enrichment program that assist ex-offender women in making a smooth transition back into the community.

Returning Home- Meet Ms. Ty’Wanda Johnson

Ms. Ty’Wanda Johnson was a participant in the Empowering Choices Jail Program at the Tuscaloosa County Jail in Tuscaloosa Al. She was an attentive student and applied the materials that she learned. She is currently participating in the Empowering Choices Alternative 2 Incarceration Community Program in Tuscaloosa . The program is a 14 week Skills enrichment program aimed to assist ex offenders in making a smooth transition back into the community.

The Beginning of the End of Halfhearted Re-Entry – Prison Path Visitor Information & Inmate Locator- Prison Path

The Beginning of the End of Halfhearted Re-Entry

Non Violent Inmates

During the last six months, Attorney General Eric Holder has announced new policies for prison reform and the reduction of our high recidivism rates. The reforms announced previously focused on the overkill of charging defendants which resulted in long  sentences for nonviolent offenders. On March 24, it was announced that the Federal Bureau of Prisons will order new requirements for the 200 plus federal halfway houses in the United States. Federal halfway houses shall provide appropriate treatment to returning citizens with  mental health and substance abuse issues. For many years, halfway houses were just halfhearted attempts at providing successful re-entry to former inmates. Returning citizens from our federal prisons were placed in halfway houses without access to health care for mental health issues and treatment for addictions. Without such treatment, it was inevitable that a substantial number of those released would become new statistics for our high recidivism rates.

Attorney General Holder stated that, “All halfway houses will have to offer standardized cognitive behavioral programs for federal inmates, and the Bureau of Prisons will set guidelines for the qualifications of instructors as well as the size and length of the classes.”

The federal halfway houses shall also provide transportation in order that former inmates can find jobs. Without transportation, returning citizens faced major obstacles in finding jobs. Many halfway houses are not near any public transportation. The studies have shown that returning citizens who are employed become productive members of society. A gourmet restaurant that employed inmates in Wales had a 12% recidivism rate compared to the national 47% recidivism rate in England.  The inmates were required to have only six- 18 months left on their sentence. The inmates also resolved any problems such as alcohol, drugs, and anger  before being allowed to work at the restaurant.

Another example of a successful state halfway house in the United States— The John R. Hay House located in Kingsport, Tennessee. The Hay House was founded in 1981 to help former inmates re-enter the community as responsible and productive citizens. The Hay House has a ninety percent success rate for its returning citizens. In the past five years, more than 1,700 individuals have entered the Hay House program. Of the 1700, 500 have earned GEDs, 899 completed alcohol and drug education and aftercare programs, and 579 completed  behavioral modification and education programs. Additionally, participants earned $1,333,457; paid $516,175 in child support, criminal injury fees, restitution, fines and court costs; and worked more than 124,000 community service hours worth an estimated $638,000.

Hay House Director, Dr. Chuck Walsh, stated that the Hay House, “Gives them a place to live, get treatment they need, medicine, get a job, pay their fines. It gives them at least a fighting chance.” Hay House costs taxpayers less than one-tenth that of imprisonment and has been recognized as a model program by the Tennessee State Department of Corrections.

The new federal policies for halfway houses are the beginning of wholehearted successful Re-Entry programs for our federal returning citizens.

ReBlogged from Prison Pathway

 

Tags: 

Attention nonprofits -Beware of mild mannered volunteers with ulterior motives!!!

volunteers

Volunteers are  the life force behind a good nonprofit  outreach  community organization . Woman2Woman Empowerment is no exception. . We are presently seeking volunteers to fill several positions within our organization. As you know all non profits are always seeking volunteers. We always need bodies to help in all areas of the organization. The more hands the merrier is what I use to think. This experience might have changed that mindset for me.

We placed a listing on several sites for  volunteers for our program. Woman2Woman Empowerment  offers the community of Tuscaloosa Alabama  two program that primarily assist incarcerated and formerly incarcerated person  in making a smooth transition back into the community. When we interview individuals we are seeking a certain type of person who is comfortable working with ex-offenders and who believes in 2nd, 3rd and even 4th chances.

Our organization is not one of those that is so hung up on everyone having a title and an elaborate position. We are more interested in assisting our target population in reaching and obtaining their goals. I am the founder and Exec Director and I hardly ever introduce myself as such.   We try very hard to add people to our ranks that feel this way as well. We are not always successful. Sometimes one gets by us-for a minute anyway.

Non profits let me give you a word of warning

If your volunteer says:

  • I am not interested in a position and then sends an email about how easy it will be to create a position for them in your company -This might not be a good match.
  • While you and said volunteer are  at a meeting and before you got there they  told people about you and had to represent the organization ,but they never introduce you to the people they talked you up to at said meeting -This might not be a good match.
  • We need to discuss a some sort of position to compensate for the research, connections and information (1 week’s worth by the way) of work that I have done for the organization since I’ve been here) -This might not be a good match.
  • You would not have known about such and such if I had not told you about it. Even though its public knowledge in a public forum . This might not be a good match
  • If after one week they feel that they are irreplaceable -This definitely is not a good match.

Now don’t get me wrong. The majority of volunteers want to do just that, volunteer with the organization. They are happy to be a part of your service organization.  And to you, oh wonderful  sincere volunteer, I take my hat and coat off to you.  We love and welcome volunteers. Thank you so much for the extra pair of hands and feet and heart that you give to your community. You are not concerned with position or posturing . You are content to serve without a title or a check.

But there are a small constituency of persons who want to take over what you have spent blood sweat and years of tears  to build. They feel they can do a better job or they have better ideas or better ability and skills.  They are not content to just serve or be a leader within the ranks. They want to be CEO or Exec Director or Board Chairperson. They are coming for your position within the company.

get out 1

If you are trying to take over my position while I am still in it then you might need …….

And with all the tact that you can muster ,you have to convey to them that your position is not open at this time.  You have to remind them that the volunteer position they interviewed for is very important to the mission of the organization. And if they insist upon coming after your position with the subtleness of a rhino them you have to suggest to them that maybe ,just maybe this might not be a good match.!