California Medical Facility (CMF) in Vacaville recently hosted its first Family2Child Literacy Project event, focusing on reconnecting incarcerated parents with their children back home.
Family2Child is a project of Place4Grace, a nonprofit serving families impacted by incarceration. Through CDCR’s Innovative Grant Program, incarcerated fathers at CMF were assisted by Place4Grace staff in choosing from over 50 books to read themselves reading the perfect story to their sons and daughters. These donated books cover a broad spectrum of themes for children of all ages, including various cultural backgrounds and sensitive subjects pertaining to childhood.
It isn’t easy to connect with your child when you spend each day inside O.H. Close Youth Correctional Facility and 18-year-old Marquise Timmons lost that privilege upon incarceration. “At times I feel like I’m letting her down,” Timmons said, referring to his 3-year-old daughter. Through the power of reading, O.H. Close staff and the Father2Child Literacy Project are bridging the communication gap between father and child.”
The soothing sound of a parent’s voice is a source of comfort for children throughout the world, and one organization is helping children whose parents are in prison continue to find that comfort. Now in its fifth year, the Father2Child Literacy Project works with fathers in California prisons to record books on CDs for their children to listen to. The CDs and accompanying books are sent to the children, along with a message from the father. The goal of the program is to support family connectedness, comfort children, and enable fathers to be active in encouraging their children to read.