Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $744,565)
The Dorchester County Health Department (DCHD) has been providing services to support justice-involved parents and their minor children since 2016 through the Connecting For Success (CFS) program. Program activities include: re-entry planning during incarceration and post-release case management; group interventions including parenting, life skills, and anger management; and mental health treatment for minor children. The program utilizes a three-pronged approach. Outreach Workers complete an intake and assessments to develop re-entry and support plans with incarcerated parents. They are able to work with the parent during incarceration and throughout their re-entry process to offer ongoing case management. Group interventions include Parenting Inside Out (including family visitation), Anger Management Mindful Movements (AMMM), Getting Ahead While Getting Out, and life skills sessions. The final piece of programming is school-based mental health treatment for children of incarcerated parents. Communication between the child and incarcerated parent, by mail, phone or in-person, is encouraged and facilitated when appropriate. Caregivers and children are referred for other support services as needed. Program deliverables include: development of protocol for children participating in full-contact visits with incarcerated parents at the Dorchester Department of Corrections; development of a brochure or video for families about visitation at the Dorchester DOC; and development of a package allowing replication of the AMMM group.