Lets encourage 500 Christchurch children to write to their parent in prison
What is Pillars to Post?
It is a project where the community comes together to support children of prisoners to write to their parent in prison.
A number of children have been stricken by the Christchurch earthquake. Some are still living in Christchurch but some have also left town. Right now, visiting their parent in prison is not easy. We want to help.
What is a Mail kit?
A Mail Kit is a decorated box with writing supplies given to children with a parent in prison. A child with a parent in prison who has been affected by the earthquake can receive a special kit.
How can a Child receive a Kit?
Why is a Mail Kit important?
Being separated from Mum or Dad is never easy. That’s why it’s important for children and their parents or family members to stay in touch. Long distance phone calls are nice but are often too expensive. Children often live too far away to visit their parent. Mail Kits can help children to begin letter writing and stay in the letter-writing habit.
Due to prison policy children are unable to take artwork and drawings into the prison but they are able to mail them. If they are encouraged to write letters to their parent it strengthens the relationship and motivates strong family ties. Research shows that parents going back to prison is reduced when families are strengthened during a prison sentence. It assures children that their parent is still there for them. Letters also have a beneficial effect on the prisoner parent in maintaining their relationship with their child, keeping them in touch with what is happening in their child’s life.
Pillars children's website www.justus.org.nz has been specifically developed to assist children with a parent in prison to understand and cope with the separation. On this website we have included an area which enables the child to easily write a letter to their parent and then print it off .(http://www.justus.org.nz/my-letter.html).
Research shows that re-offending is reduced when family ties are strengthened during a prison sentence.