Unitarian Universalist Church of Bloomington, Indiana Seeking the Spirit | Building Community | Changing the World
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Hope for Prisoners Task Force

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Our mission is to raise awareness of the issues related to mass incarceration in our community, state, and nation, and to affirm the worth and dignity of those in jail or prison and their families, and ex-offenders returning to our community.

This task force is taking the lead in several service initiatives, including:

  • Kids with Absent Parents (KAP), which reaches out to children of incarcerated parents.  Girls, Inc. and Big Brothers Big Sisters are serving as partners in this program.
  • Read to Me, a local jail program that connects inmates with their children through recorded story reading.
  • Raising awareness of incarceration and related issues by organizing forums, movie viewings, and study groups around such topics as the opiate crisis, public defense system inadequacies, the increasing number of incarcerated women, the high number of African Americans in the prison system locally and nationally, and homelessness of ex-offenders.

We coordinate activities with local affiliated organizations and initiatives, including:

  • New Leaf New Life: a Monroe County nonprofit organization that offers services to inmates in the Monroe County jail and ex-offenders in the community. Among other service possibilities, NLNL volunteers offer monthly assistance with BINGO sessions, which are much valued by local jail inmates. 
  • Courage to Change: a 12 step based, low barrier, sober living environment centered in Bloomington and surrounding counties. Service opportunities include tutor those pursuing a high school degree or preparing for college.
  • Pages for Prisoners program: corresponding with inmates, and providing requested printed materials and creative writing assistance when possible.

Meetings are held at the church every few months. Notification of these meetings, other events, and service opportunities are distributed via the Taskforce email list. If you wish to receive these infrequent notices, or for additional information on any of our activities, please contact task force chair Deb Fish.

Hope or Prisoners Task Force Application

SJ Month September