Making Aotearoa New Zealand
the best place to raise children
in flourishing families
Family Works is working around the region to support women to settle back into the community after spending time in prison. Now the simple act of gifting charms has started to have true meaning for the women.
The Department of Corrections has contracted Presbyterian Support Northern to deliver a support programme, called Out of Gate, to women prisoners around the country.
Presbyterian Support Central’s Family Works service is providing the programme to women being released from Arohata Prison, near Wellington. By supporting women both before and after their releases the Department of Corrections is aiming to reduce re-offending by 25 per cent by 2017.
So far, Family Works reports the programme is proving to be very successful in this region.
Family Works Central General Manager, Julia Hennessy explains that while many people think that coming out of prison should be a happy time for the women, it’s actually a very tough time.
“Many of the women are scared and uneasy about moving back into the community,” says Mrs. Hennessy.
As part of supporting the women and celebrating each milestone with them, Family Works Central has started gifting the women a charm bracelet. Mrs. Hennessy explains that the small gift is really making a world of difference to the women.
“The bracelets and charms provide something tangible that they can look at to remind them of how far they have come since their release.”
For each month that the women avoid re-conviction they are presented with a charm bead to signify and celebrate their achievement.
“Soon their positive journey will be on their wrist to remind them of their achievements. It will be a private reminder to make the right choices in the future.”