The dads who take part in our Storytime program at Clarence Correctional Centre surprised themselves with how much they loved making these colourful placemats for their children in our Christmas craft workshop! […]
Dad’s voice and a Christmas delivery make the holidays apart a little easier
By a SHINE team member
I met Marty*, a dad in custody, one day at the Parklea complex while I was collecting referrals.
He asked about our Storytime program and what was involved. Marty has three children, seven year old Tommie* and three year old twins Lou* and Jay*. He said he used to always read to his children each night at bedtime and was really missing them all, so the Storytime program would be a great activity to participate in.
Marty choose the book The Lion Inside and was amazed when he realized that he got to record his voice and that it would be sent to his kids. He had thought that he would have a telephone conversation and read it to the children over the phone and was concerned Tommie would miss out as he was at school.
He was very enthusiastic and read a very animated version of the book, complete with growling sound effects and different voices for the characters.
The book and audio was sent to the children’s mother Sally* and she said they loved it!
Sally told us that Tommie really wished he could read a book with his dad and since getting the Storytime package, was falling asleep every night holding the book and listening to his dad’s voice.
As part of the annual Rotary Tree of Joy campaign, SHINE was able to offer the family some Christmas gifts. Mum was very appreciative and said that money had been tight since Marty had been in custody.
On the day of the present drop off, the children ran excitedly to the door. The smiles on their faces when they looked into the bags was pure happiness. Lou loved her doll, Jay pulled out a dinosaur and played with it and Tommie began excitedly talking to his mum about the Super Mario Lego he’d received.
Mum, looking on, had tears of joy in her eyes. She thanked SHINE for the support and said the children were still listening to dad’s voice and reading the book as a comfort each night.
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