COMMUNITIES INSPIRING ACTION: YOUTH OF INCARCERATED PARENTS
The IMRP is currently collaborating with Hartford Public Library and Everyday Democracy in a community discussions initiative with Hartford-area residents. The project's goals are: to serve as a pilot leading to the establishment of a permanent process/structure for community participation and action as well as community participation and action as well as community-driven policy change on local, regional, national and global public issues; and, to engage the community, especially those who are most affected by incarceration, in dialogue that leads to policy-making and personal action to improve the lives and conditions of children of incarcerated parents.
MULTI-YEAR RESEARCH AND DATA-DRIVEN DIRECT SERVICE PROVISION
The IMRP is currently contracting with Big Brothers Big Sisters and Families in Crisis to provide direct care services to children with a parent in prison. Nutmeg Big Brothers Big Sisters is managing the delivery of mentoring services for children in the Hartford, Bridgeport and New London areas of Connecticut. Families in Crisis also operates within the greater Hartford area, as well as Waterbury and New Haven, providing wraparound services to children and their families, when necessary. The IMRP, in collaboration with CCSU faculty, is evaluating the effectiveness of direct care services in alleviating negative responses to parental incarceration and improving the positive attributes of children of incarcerated parents.
Click here to read the original Request for Proposals (RFP)
MULTI-FACETED ARTS COLLABORATIVE
In April 2009, the IMRP contracted with The Judy Dworin Performance Project Inc. (JDPP) to provide arts-based outreach activities with women currently incarcerated at York Correctional Institution, Connecticut's only female state prison, and their children in the community. JDPP, Families in Crisis, York CI staff, and the IMRP worked with women at York Correctional Facility and their children in a series of collaborative projects in dance, song, storytelling, poetry, and personal testimony. One goal of the project was to bridge the gap between mothers and their children to more effectively support and nurture communication and bonding. Another goal was to raise public awareness to issues impacting children with incarcerated mothers. This year, the project has been expanded, working with children in the community during a three-phase intervention program. The JDPP has received a grant from the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving that includes funds for the IMRP to evaluate the effect this program has on its participants.
THE SPRING 2010 COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT PROJECT AT CCSU
This past spring, a unique collaboration took place between CCSU and students at the Dr. James H. Naylor School in Hartford. With the assistance of the Department of Teacher Education's Karen Riem and CCSU professors Mary Collins of the English Department and Jerry Butler of the Art Education, students from both schools had the opportunity to work together on creating an artistic product. Students at the Dr. James H. Naylor School worked closely with two classes at CCSU. Professor Butler and his art education students worked with children whose parents were incarcerated on a mural project. His class met regularly with the children to design a narrative theme of the mural based on the children's writings. The children wrote letters, poems, and short stories. Professor Collins' Advanced Creative Nonfiction class read and edited the children's work creating a 103-page magazine that was published as part of the CCSU literary journal, The Helix, and distributed to all public libraries in the state.