Families & Criminal Justice [FCJ] is a small non-profit agency with a mission of preventing intergenerational incarceration. We provide services to pregnant prisoners, reentering mothers who are pregnant or parenting infants/toddlers, and formerly incarcerated mothers and their young children 3-5 years of age. The outcomes of our projects are exemplary and include healthier pregnancies, babies and children, as well as more responsive parenting by participating mothers.
While we are able to offer multiple types of assistance to our participants, most mothers and fathers in jails and prisons have few supports for parenting. For example, California prisons each house 2,000+ prisoners but typically offer a single parent education course or none at all. In response to these circumstances, we want to provide parenting and child development publications by mail to incarcerated parents for the costs of duplication and postage. To demonstrate this service, we want to distribute publication catalogs to all California correctional institutions, and make them available online for download by correctional staff. Parents in jails and prisons will be able to order FCJ documents like “Visiting with Your Child in Jail” and “Telling Your Child You Are in Prison”, as well as the single copies permitted by law of journal articles like “Black Mothers in Prison”.
The demand for this service is high. FCJ currently receives more than 60 inquiries per month from California prisoners requesting information about access to publications about parenting, child development or children of incarcerated parents.
Once implemented, this project should become self-supporting, as the fees we receive from prepaid orders will cover our expenses. If we are funded by the Awesome Foundation, we intend to provide California’s incarcerated mothers and fathers with low-cost informational and educational materials that support their parental identity and the healthy development of their children.
Funded by Los Angeles, CA (March 2020)