Breaking Cycles and Building Bonds at #MACoCon

Attendees of the MACo Winter Conference sessionBreaking Cycles and Building Bonds…from Behind Bars” learned about innovative and award-winning programs that strive to break the cycle of incarceration and create stability within the household and community by strengthening family bonds.

Baltimore County Department of Corrections Program Manager Sharon Tyler provided insight on fitting support programs within the structure of jail and the importance of overcoming resistance to implementing innovative programming. She stressed the importance of having such programs within the walls of the jails.

Sharon Tyler discusses challenges and success of implementing family based programs, such as the Turning Pages Program, behind the walls of the Baltimore County Jail.
Sharon Tyler discusses challenges and success of implementing family based programs, such as the Turning Pages Program, behind the walls of the Baltimore County Jail.

Jane Sachs, Director of Correctional Training for the Maryland Police and Correctional Training Commissions, presented on the Strengthening Families Program. Strengthening Families helps to improve a child’s environment and family unit to make them better community members. The programs involve interactive contact visits for children with incarcerated parents as well as separate life skills programs for the children and parents. 

Founder & Director of Turning Pages, Inc. Florence Kennedy Stack, presented on the Turning Pages Program a NACo award winning program operating in the Baltimore County Jail.  The Turning Pages program uses an interactive family reading club with contact visits as a central component complemented by separate life skills workshops for  the fathers, the caregivers, and the children.   

The session was moderated by Delegate Charles Sydnor, III and held on Wednesday, December 7.

The MACo Winter Conference was held December 7-9, 2016 at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Resort in Cambridge, Maryland. This year’s conference theme was “An Ounce of Prevention”.