Celebrating Youth with Incarcerated Parents

Celebrating Youth with Incarcerated Parents

13 Jul 2017

Osborne’s Youth Action Council (YAC) and Youth Experience Success (YES) programs celebrated their annual Achievement Ceremony at St. James’ Episcopal Church this June. Volunteer partners at St. James’ welcomed Osborne staff, families, and caregivers to their beautiful and historic building to recognize the youths’ achievements during the 2016-2017 cycle. The participants in these two programs all share at least one thing in common: they have a currently incarcerated parent or a parent that was recently released from prison. Osborne’s YES Program is a nine month, skills-building curriculum for youth ages 13 to 15, who have a parent who is currently incarcerated. The YAC is a group of 16 to 19-year-olds whose mission is to raise awareness about the effect of parental incarceration on children and advocate for positive changes in the criminal justice system. At the ceremony there was a palpable sense of pride in the air for these youth, especially when listening to the amazing sound clouds both the YES and YAC members created on their own this year. One of the highlights of the ceremony each year is when the youth share what the program means to them. See their inspiring speeches below.

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Reconnecting Families on Father's Day and Year-round

Reconnecting Families on Father's Day and Year-round

19 Jun 2017

Over half of the men and women incarcerated in the U.S. are parents of minor children. To encourage family connectivity – a key factor in a person’s successful reentry – Osborne’s nationally recognized FamilyWorks program enables incarcerated parents to make, mend, and maintain relationships with their children through a comprehensive program that now operates in eight New York State prisons, Rikers Island, and at Osborne’s community sites. Our strengths-based, family-focused approach leaves people with the understanding that they have the right, the responsibility, and the capacity to meet the needs of their children and families. FamilyWorks is operated in collaboration with the NYS Department of Corrections and Community Supervision and includes Family Centers in visiting rooms and supportive services for children and families. Family Centers are child-friendly areas of prison visiting rooms where parents can bond with their children and interact with them more than they could sitting at a visiting room table. 

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Osborne Launches FamilyWorks Harlem

Osborne Launches FamilyWorks Harlem

27 Feb 2017

On February 27, 2017, the Manhattan District Attorney's Office held a press conference to announce the investment of $58 million into organizations that support youth and families to prevent crime. In total, #InvestInYouth grants will fund 100 community organizations in East Harlem, Central/West Harlem, Washington Heights, and the Lower East Side. Osborne is pleased to be a recipient of an #InvestInYouth grant as a partnership with the Harlem Restoration Project to provide services to families affected by incarceration. Osborne Association President and CEO Elizabeth Gaynes thanked the District Attorney saying,

“The Osborne Association is honored to partner with the Harlem Restoration Project to launch FamilyWorks Harlem designed to address the most serious risks faced by children and families affected by parental incarceration. We thank District Attorney Vance for this opportunity to work in such a vibrant and resilient community.”

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The Long Journey to Albion: My experience accompanying kids to visit their incarcerated mothers

The Long Journey to Albion: My experience accompanying kids to visit their incarcerated mothers

20 May 2016

Twice a year, the Osborne Association’s Family Ties program facilitates a visit to Albion Correctional Facility for children to visit their incarcerated mothers. Previous accounts of the visit describe the day to day events of the trip. For the recent April visit, our Communications Assistant Melissa Tanis volunteered to be a chaperone on the trip. She offered her insights about how the trip felt for her and the kids she was supporting.

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Youth Action Council Advocates for Proximity Legislation in Albany

Youth Action Council Advocates for Proximity Legislation in Albany

18 Apr 2016

“I have the right to speak with, see, and touch my parent.”

The Children of Incarcerated Parent’s Bill of Rights includes as Right #5

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