Sean Egan
Friday, August 27, 2010

(OSHKOSH) A nationally-renowned prison program with Wisconsin roots turns 15 this year.

One primary goal is to help inmates bond with their kids through reading.

"Breaking Barriers with Books" started as a pilot program in 1995, by UW-Oshkosh professor Michelina Manzi. It's since been introduced at prisons across the state and beyond. The goal is to help locked-up dads improve their reading skills so they can share popular children's books, like The Cat in the Hat and Curious George with their kids.

Published in Prisoner Support

By LAUREN SAUSSER (AP) 

CUMBERLAND, MARYLAND — They were unlikely dance partners in an unlikely dance hall: a 29-year-old murderer and a 10-year-old boy doing an impromptu tango as Luther Vandross' "Dance with My Father" sounded from a boom box in a prison gym.

It was one of the lighter moments at the emotional end of a weeklong summer camp where inmate dads and their children reconnected after years apart. Seven fathers — all in prison-issued jeans and blue, short-sleeved shirts — swayed to the song with their children, some openly crying.

Published in Family Support
Wednesday, 13 October 2010 16:50

Study finds children of inmates at higher risk

10/12/10
KEN MILLER, Associated Press Writer

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma children whose mothers are in prison are five times more likely to end up in prison themselves, according to a report released Tuesday by a child advocacy group.

The Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy's annual Kids Count Factbook said those children then often have children of their own who end up in the same situation, perpetuating the cycle.

"We know any adverse childhood experience, any sort of trauma or loss a child experiences affects them in their development," said Linda Terrell, the group's executive director.

Published in Family Support

Aug. 9, 2010

by David Tenenbaum

Wisconsin - It comes as no surprise that many children suffer when a parent is behind bars. But as rates of incarceration grew over the past 30 years, researchers were slow to focus on the collateral damage to children.

The best estimate says that at any one time, 1.7 million (about 2.3 percent) of all American children have a parent in prison, says Julie Poehlmann, a professor in the School of Human Ecology and investigator at the Waisman Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison

Published in Family Support