Our mentoring program matches women/men while they are incarcerated at least 6 months before they are due to be released. We match female to female and male to male. During this time a relationship is built between the mentor and mentee which will help the mentee develop the support she/he will need when she/he is released from prison. The mentor/mentee relationship continues at least 6 months after the mentee is out of prison. We also match mentors with the women that come to our transitional homes if they were not matched while incarcerated.
Studies have shown that inmates that are mentored for a 12 month period are more successful in finding employment, maintaining employment, and are less likely to recidivate. Since we have started our mentoring component in 2008, many of the mentees we have mentored have not returned to prison and are working on building productive livelihoods. The mentor, Christine, and mentee, Phyllis, in the picture (above right) were matched in 2009 and their relationship continues today. Phyllis has not gone back to prison and is living a productive life.
Our mentors have helped the mentees experience healthly relationships and given them a trusted guide, spiritual and moral support, and a friend. The other types of support mentors bring are help with clothing, food, housing, transportation, and help obtaining legal documents (ID, birth certificates, social security cards).
Tom (2nd from right) has been Barney's (1st on right) mentor pre and post release. Barney found work almost immediately with the help from his family. We were able to help him with a grocery gift card, clothing, and with his ID restoration. Dedicated and faithful mentors, like Tom really make a difference.
This 81 year old mentor, Don, was matched with Andrew, a 30 year old. Don mentored Andrew for 3 years pre-release. They have become friends and when Andrew was released he called Don to come to pick him up. Don was there every week and made a great impact on Andrew's life. They remain friends to this day and get together for dinner with their families. These are the kind of stories that make your heart glad!
Women Ablaze Ministries
P.O. Box 22095
Memphis, TN 38018
Phone: +1 901.372.2783
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