Category Archives: Events

CCT Honored by Playing for Others

CCT is one of ten nonprofits being honored by the Playing for Others (PFO) class of ’17-18 this year. PFO is an organization in Charlotte that provides a space for teens to explore and answer the questions, “Who Am I?” and “How will I give of that?” through programming in Personal Development, Service, and the Arts. Each year they choose ten local nonprofits for their teen artists to honor through spoken-word, video, music, dance, and more. In the fall, the teens performed their spoken word pieces, and the piece done for CCT, “Build People, Not Prisons”, brought the house down! On March 2nd, PFO will hold a huge culminating event called HeART Beat at McGlohan Theater.

Today we met with PFO and the other nonprofit honorees to learn more about the event, and find out what sort of piece the teens will be doing in our honor. We were excited to learn that CCT will be honored with some type of MUSICAL piece!!! We hope you will join us on March 2nd for this truly exciting event. Some of our staff attended last year and the performances were professional level productions and extremely touching.

We’re also excited that some of the PFO teens will be making a special appearance at our first ever “Build People, Not Prisons Friend-Raiser” on March 22nd, where they will do an encore performance of their spoken-word piece from the fall. We hope to see you all there as well!

CCT Executive Director Participates in City-Wide Panel

Last night CCT Executive Director, Myra Clark, participated in a panel at a city-wide event about mass incarceration. The event, “Rethinking Incarceration” was hosted by Warehouse 242 and featured a new book by the same name, authored by Dominique DuBois Gilliard. Mr. Gilliard was the keynote speaker and also served on the panel. The other panel members were Toussaint Romain, Ramona Brandt, and Councilman Braxton Winston

More than 300 people attended the event and discussed topics ranging from the huge racial disparities in our criminal justice system, to the need for affordable housing and jobs for people with criminal records, to the impact of mass incarceration on children and families.

The event was a wonderful start to a much needed ongoing conversation in Charlotte. Creative Loafing did a lengthy story that is worth a read if you would like to learn more:

Imagine being sentenced to four years in prison just for stealing clamps.

It’s a case that will stick with Toussaint Romain for years to come, and has only gone to further his belief that, as he told me during a recent chat, “There is no justice in the criminal justice system.”

Romain, a public defender in Mecklenburg County who represents repeat offenders and habitual felons, was telling me about a client he represented last year named Charles. He had been caught at Lowe’s shoplifting metal hand clamps. When he was searched, he was found to also be concealing a package of fish he had stolen from BI-LO. Because he was a repeat offender, he was charged with a felony in relation to the shoplifting incident, and because he had previous felonies on his record, he was stamped as a habitual felon and faced 15 years in prison.

When Romain asked Charles why he was stealing when he knew his record meant he could be facing harsh punishment, his answer was heartbreaking.

“He said, ‘Listen, I’ll tell you. I stole the clamps so that when I put a fish on my metal rod, and I put the clamps on my fish, when I turn the rod over my campfire, the fish will cook evenly. Because I’m homeless. I learned how to do this when I was in the military,'” Romain recalled.

<Read the full article here>

Spring Fling 2017

CCT held its 5th Annual Spring Fling event on May 11th. The event was a great success with the highest turnout yet! We had a great time honoring our volunteers and supporters which enjoying live jazz music and FUNdraising activities. For the first time ever, we held the event at the Goodwill Opportunity Campus. The community garden provided an excellent backdrop for this event which celebrates growth and fresh starts.

Congratulations to volunteers of the year, Betty Ritchie, Joanna Patcha, and Tom Brown. Further congratulations to our employer of the year, Sam’s Sandwich Shop, which has been offering fair chance hiring and supporting CCT for over a decade. Last but not least, thank you and congratulations to this year’s Community of Faith award recipient, New Beginnings Church, which has sent us many committed volunteers and great programming.

Check out more photos in our PHOTO ALBUM!

Experiential Workshops for Your Organization

Does your organization/community of faith/school seek a greater understanding of incarceration and what it is like to reenter the community? Do you want to understand the challenges our clients face? Are you concerned about the impact having a loved one incarcerated has on children? Want to know what you can do to help?

CCT offers experiential workshops for groups like yours. We’ll walk you through simulations and scenarios that give you a deeper understanding of what life is like for our clients. You’ll also learn about policies you can advocate for and ways you can help CCT continue to carry out our mission.

Contact us today at communications@centerforcommunitytransitions.org