News: Press ReleasesFor Release: November 20, 2002
- Contact: Larry Traylor, (804) 674-3574
Carolyn LeCroy, Women in Transition, Inc.
DOC Inmates Send Holiday Messages Home to Family
- Fourth year of program in five facilities across the state -
RICHMOND – The Virginia Department of Corrections (DOC) and Women In Transition, Inc., (WIT) will videotape Messages from Mom and Messages From Dad at several prison facilities to help inmates send Holiday messages home. In its fourth year, the project is designed to help maintain contact between inmates and their families, particularly the children of inmates.
"This project is so beneficial to both inmate and family, especially during the holidays," said Director Gene Johnson. "Because of its success, we hope to expand this project even further in the future."
DOC facilities taping inmate messages this year are Botetourt Correctional Unit (men), Powhatan Correctional Center (men), Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women, Virginia Correctional Center for Women and Pocahontas Correctional Unit for Women.
DOC and WIT first recorded Messages From Mom at Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women during Christmas 1999. The project grew to include all female facilities in Virginia for Mother's Day 2000 messages. More messages were done for Christmas that same year and the project has continued to grow with encouragement of the Wardens, the staff, the inmates, their children and families. Messages are now taped twice a year at the three female facilities while Powhatan Correctional Center was the first male facility in Virginia to conduct such a project for Father's Day 2000.
Because WIT is a non-profit organization, photographers and producers donate their time and equipment so that each message is videotaped at no cost to taxpayers. The entire video crew is made up of professionals who have many years of experience in film and video productions.
Each inmate is allowed 15 minutes for their message. Inmates may read a poem, book, and/or talk directly to family members.