Imagine making a choice out of desperation, sometimes due to a lack of understanding of the consequences, or simply because you don’t understand what healthy choices are. Today, the Lebanon County Correctional Facility has over 85 female inmates, many of whom have made choices that land them behind bars. In order to succeed when they’re released, these women have to learn how to make healthier decisions. The Female Offenders Re-entry Program (F.O.R.E.) is offering a group program to do just that.
“Everyone makes mistakes. We have all made choices that we look back on and wish were different; unfortunately, some people make choices that change their whole lives,” said Donna Gathright, President of F.O.R.E. Board of Directors. ”We’re about helping to change lives, change patterns, and give female offenders a second chance. Everyone deserves that; what’s the point of a correctional system if it doesn’t seek to change the patterns that develop into bad choices?”
The women’s only program will be offered for eight weeks, guided by a trained facilitator. (Additional information on the program can be found here.) The program will focus on topics such as self-esteem, co-dependency, and healthy relationships. These topics are the essence of what sustains unhealthy choices for many women serving time in correctional facilities locally and across the country. “Changing these behaviors and patterns is what builds greater capacity to seek and maintain employment, education and create change for their children and families,” Gathright said. “Change is possible when someone is willing to guide you through a new way of thinking and developing new behaviors. Our program and the support group are doing just that.”
Public groups are scheduled as referrals are received. Sessions are only $5 and will run for approximately 1-2 hours in the evening. Class size is limited, so register early. This program is open to all adult women and will be run in a confidential environment. For additional information or to register, contact 717-273-9328.