Tag Archives: reentry

HeARTbeat Event

This year CCT is SO EXCITED to be one of 10 nonprofit honorees at the annual Playing for Others HeARTbeat event!

Join us for a one-of-a-kind event honoring 10 local nonprofits through music, dance and digital art. Playing for Others teens create and perform original works of art in honor of these incredible organizations and their service to the Charlotte community.

McGlohon Theatre at Spirit Square – 345 N College St. map it

2017-2018 Non-Profit Honorees:
Camp Dogwood
Center for Community Transitions!!!!!
Code for Charlotte
Girls Pursuing Science
Hopeway Foundation
Right Moves for Youth
Sustain Charlotte
Teal Divas
The Third Place
Women Executives for Community Service (WINGS program)

Before the show, head over to Brixx Pizza uptown. Print and bring in the Brixx Buxx Flyer – PFO from our website (coming soon) and Brixx will donate $3 to PFO for every entree purchased and $1 for every kids pizza purchased. Brixx also validates parking!

Read more and purchase your tickets here: https://playingforothers.org/event/heartbeat-event/

 

CCT Client Profiled in Charlotte Five!

Photo by: Katie Toussaint

Online news and culture publication, Charlotte Five, did a profile of LifeWorks! client, Tyrone Miller. In the piece, Tyrone shares his outlook on life after prison and his journey to try to find employment.

Twenty-seven-year-old Tyrone Miller was released from prison just over a month ago. He spent nearly eight years behind bars in a North Carolina correctional facility for assault with a deadly weapon.

He shares this information with no hesitation as he leans back, relaxed, in a desk chair at The Center for Community Transitions (CCT) at the Goodwill Opportunity Campus off of Wilkinson Boulevard. CCT offers Lifeworks! programs to address the personal and professional needs of those with criminal records.

Miller offers an easy, bright smile. His black hair is kept in neat cornrows, almond-colored glasses round out his face and two sparkling studs flash on his ears. He wears a black button-down, charcoal slacks and black shoes.

It’s the perfect interview look.

<Read the full article here>

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!

#DoGoodWeek in Charlotte and CCT

It’s #DoGoodWeek in Charlotte – a week of honoring AND recruiting volunteers! CCT Executive Director, Myra Clark, and CCT Volunteer, Joanna Patcha, appeared on FOX 46’s “Good Day” show to talk about our work and some volunteer opportunities.

Our current volunteer opportunities are listed on our ShareCharlotte Page. 

Table displays for The Second Chance Alliance

April is Second Chance Month

All month CCT has been celebrating Second Chance Month as an informal month declared by a peer organization, Prison Fellowship, but today, it became official. The U.S. Senate Declared April Second Chance Month nationwide.

It’s fitting then that we also visited our state legislators today as part of a coalition of reentry organizations across NC called the Second Chance Alliance. On behalf of our clients, we lobbied for several pieces of legislation that make sense for reentry and are smart on crime. Download the attached to see a full list of legislation we’re supporting, and follow us on Facebook or Twitter for legislative updates.

SCA, action request, 2017 (1)

Two women water a newly made garden bed.

New Garden at the Center for Women

Last week volunteer extraordinaire, Pam Eavenson, assisted residents of the Center for Women with starting a vegetable and herb garden. The garden is on the grounds of our main facility and we look forward to watching it grow alongside our residents. Make sure you check it out next time you visit.

NC Aims to Reduce Use of Solitary Confinement

NC has reduced its use of solitary confinement by more than 50% since 2012 but still has a long way to go according to a recently released Vera Institute report. Currently, incarcerated individuals may find themselves in solitary confinement (also known as segregation units) for minor infractions such as swearing. At some state facilities the average time spent in solitary is nearly five years. The Vera Institute also found racial disparities in the use of solitary. The state faces major staff shortages making it difficult to provide alternatives to segregation. The report also pointed out that many people are being released from years in solitary confinement directly back into the community, making their transition all the more difficult. The institute recommends moving people out of solitary Confinement and into reentry units. CCT is glad the state leadership is committed to continuing to take steps to reduce the use of solitary confinment and to put more resources toward reentry housing units. To learn more, read the article in the Charlotte Observer.

Charlotte Opportunity Task Force

The Charlotte Opportunity Task Force, a group of 20 community members who spent 18 months studying intergenerational povery in Charlotte-Mecklenburg, released its report at the end of March. Charlotte-Mecklenburg was ranked 50th out of 50 in an economic mobility study conducted on America’s largest cities in 2013, and the task force aimed to discover the causes of constrained mobility and propose solutions. The Task Force included the collateral consequences of incarceration in the report. Incarceration effects family strength and stability, income, savings, education, and housing. As the city moves forward in trying to address the concerns raised in the report, CCT expects to see reentry assistance and policy advocacy opportunities related to mitigating the effects of incarceration on families and individuals. You can read the full report at  https://leadingonopportunity.org/

LifeWorks! Director, Erik Ortega, conducts day long workshop in Gastonia.

LifeWorks! in Gastonia

CCT LifeWorks! has been working with Goodwill Southern Piedmont and Gaston County to bring some of their programming to reentry clients in Gastonia. In February, they conducted a day long workshop with federal inmates at the Gaston County Jail. The program was well-received, and talks are ongoing to bring more services to the area.

A Mother Sees her Daughters for the First Time in 6 Years

Latasha was transferred to CCT Center for Women earlier this year after six years in prison. A wife and mother of two, she struggled with her roles as both behind bars. Her husband, Todd, a wonderful father, did not want their two girls, Baylee and Tannon, to be exposed to the prison atmosphere, and decided that they would not visit their mother in prison. It was a tough decision, one that no family should have to make.

The environment at the Center for Women is very different from a regular corrections facility, resembling a dormitory more than a prison. There are no bars or barbed wire. Residents may decorate their rooms, which they share with one roommate, as they wish. On any given day you’ll see the hustle and bustle of the women coming and going from work, school, or adventures out in the community with our amazingly dedicated volunteer sponsors. So when Latasha came here, she told Todd it was a much more suitable environment for their two girls.

Latasha plays basketball with her youngest daughter.

Latasha plays basketball with her youngest.

After visiting our facility himself, he decided that yes, the homey atmosphere was healthy enough for his children. So, after six long years, the family reunited. After hugs and joyful tears, the foursome played several games of basketball outside the dorm, soaking in the sunshine and relishing simply being together.

By allowing our residents to rebuild relationships and restore family bonds while they are finishing their sentences, we know that they are more likely to make a successful transition back into their homes and communities when they are released.