EDUCATE, DON'T INCARCERATE!
We bring writing workshops to people who are incarcerated, detained and formerly incarcerated for advocacy, education and literacy development.
"In life we may experience things and go through things that we don’t feel comfortable telling others about. Through experience i realized the more i kept inside the more imprisoned i became. For me writing is a form of liberation. I no longer feel imprisoned by my deep dark secrets of life experiences. Once i express them with a pen and pad i am FREE."
Justin Corney, Prison Writes Blog contributor
Who We Work With
Taconic Correctional Facility
In these workshops with women preparing for reentry, we work with them on resumes, cover letters and expressive writing.
In our workshops with young people in Bronxconnect alternative to incarceration program we use writing to explore themes of community, healing and resilience.
Brooklyn District Attorney's Office of Reentry Programs
In these workshops with young people experiencing reentry we use writing to help participants develop their confidence and social and communication skills.
Rikers Island Jail
We bring writing activities that are fun, reflective and educational to provide a meaningful outlet of expression for our participants who are being held at Rikers.
Close to Home
For our youngest program participants who are being held in detention we bring lots of fun materials, markers, poster board, and comics, to engage youth in experiencing reading and writing as allies in their life pursuits.
About the School to Prison Pipeline
The United States incarcerates more people than any other nation in the world. The school-to-prison pipeline is a national trend of funneling children out of public schools and into the criminal justice system. “Zero-tolerance” policies that encourage police presence in schools and utilize harsh punishments for minor infractions disproportionately affect racial minorities and children with learning disabilities.
The Incarcerated Youth
Educate, Don't Incarcerate
The higher the degree, the lower the recidivism rate: education for the incarcerated population reduces violence in correctional facilities, significantly increases chances of employment after release, and cuts the correctional budget by millions of dollars in the long term.
(Prison Studies Project. (2018). Why Prison Education? Link)
Literacy Development & Therapeutic Writing: Why it’s Important
Inmates have a 16% chance of recidivism with literacy education, and a 70% chance of recidivism with no literacy education.
(Begin to Read. (2015). Literacy Statistics. Link)
Women and Girls in the Prison System
Understanding that women more often than not enter the criminal justice system as survivors, we create an atmosphere of mutual aid with a strengths based approach. Gender responsive programs take into account that women have different pathways through the systems than men.
1/4 of our participants identify as women.