Several innovative programs exist within the prison walls of the Ohio’s Department of Rehabilitation and Correction and the Ohio Reformatory for Women.
The role of the inmate narrator is to read picture books to the children in much the same manner that children’s hour would be done at a public library.
Programs included in the Ohio Reformatory for Women:
Mom and Kids Day occurs twice a year as a way to keep the bond between family strong and to help to keep skills strong for family reunification. During the summer, Mom and Me Day Camp is held where the family comes into the correctional facility and spends the day playing games and sharing food. In December, a Mom and Kids Day Holiday event is held where the family can share holiday events for the day.
The Short Term Offender Unit is available to offenders with short sentences of 90 days or less. This program is designed to help offenders quickly and efficiently re-integrate back into society. Classes include Life Skills, Coping Strategies, Family Services, Health and Wellness, Recovery Issues, Job Readiness, Dressing for Success, Finance Management and other very important topics related to real life living within society.
Therapeutic Community are residential Alcohol and Other Drug treatment programs that are designed for long-term (6-12 months.) Therapeutic Community believes that substance abuse behavior is due to deficits in social, personal and family development and can be addressed and treated with pro-social behavior techniques to help replace the need for substance abuse addictions.
Achieving Baby Care Success is a unique program that allows new mothers to maintain custody of their newborn babies and breast feed them. Child development research shows that infants that bond with their mothers in the first few months of their lives, develop stronger both emotionally and intellectually. The infant/mother program requires mothers who are on short-term non-violent sentences and are carefully screened. Mothers who fill the strict requirements are able to keep their newborns with them during their incarceration and are able to leave the facility with the babies at the end.
Reading Room is a room designed to encourage literacy by providing a comfortable library room for children and incarcerated families to enjoy during family visits. The rooms are stocked with quality children’s books and an inmate narrator who reads aloud to visiting children. Donated arts and crafts supplies are provided for creative time.
Several other inmate programs exist at the Ohio Reformatory for Women including charitable knitting programs, dog rescue, wildlife rehabilitation, school bus cleaning and landscaping. Vocational programs include: building trades, cosmetology, office systems, and landscape and horticulture.