Our stories

Life is looking up for this mum in custody after visit with kids

We recently supported one of our mums in custody at Clarence during her first visit in 13 months with her son and daughter.

The occasion was even more special because it was also her daughter’s 14th birthday on the day of the visit.

Mum has completed all of our courses at Clarence Correctional Centre, including Keeping Us TogetherStorytime and Rythm2Recovery and is determined to get her life back on track.

She’s already lined up a full-time job in a cafe for when she’s released and is hoping to be back with her family within the next six weeks.

Our team made sure to be prepared for the big day of the visit when it arrived.

The family were welcomed by our team and given special activities for the children, a birthday card craft for the daughter and super hero Avengers stencils for the son, so both children had something suitable for them to do with mum during their precious time together.

Visiting a correctional centre can be very daunting for children; loud gates and high security are intimidating, and seeing mum is often a very emotional experience.

By providing gentle support and activities, our team helps families to relax and enjoy their time together and take some of the stress out of what is a very unusual environment for children to be in.

The visit went well and the children were full of smiles at the end as they left the visiting area.

Mum also expressed how pleased she was that her son, who has additional needs, was able to sit down with her for so long and be focused thanks to the activities.

The next time she saw us at the centre, she went out of her way to come over and thank our team for the support we’d provided her family.

Her son, 9, is also enrolled in our mentoring program, and nan says he really looks forward to seeing his mentor at their sessions in school each week.

Based on feedback from his classroom teacher and his nan, the main focus of our sessions this term was supporting him in managing his anxiety and increasing his school attendance.

We’re so happy with his progress. When we started sessions, he was only attending school two or three days each week but now he’s just completed his fifth consecutive full week this term!

School attendance is a vital step in improving future outcomes for children and our mentors work hard to give our kids the encouragement and mental health tools they need to be able to turn up and give learning a shot every day.

We’re so pleased that in this family’s case, we are able to provide support for the whole family, the kids and nan on the outside and mum on the inside, so they can look forward to a brighter future together.

The kids just want mum home again.

Please donate today to support families in the justice system to build better futures. 

Thank you to Serco who supports our program delivery in the Clarence Correctional Centre.

Thank you to the Thyne Reid Foundation and The Raymond E Purves Foundation for supporting our mentoring program in the Clarence Valley, NSW. 

Life is looking up for this mum in custody after visit with kids

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