From Women's Storybook Project of Texas, this month's Get Involved spotlight organization:
About the Women’s Storybook Project of Texas:
Our mission is connecting children with their incarcerated mothers through the joy of literature. Women’s Storybook Project of Texas is a special program that helps incarcerated mothers do what moms have always done to comfort and nurture their children — read them bedtime stories, using their own voices to love, reassure, and encourage them from miles away. According to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, "Without intervention, children of incarcerated parents are six to eight times more likely to become involved in a criminal lifestyle.”
Volunteers visit women’s prisons in Central and East Texas once a month to record mothers reading books aloud to their children. We then mail the books and recordings to the children, who live in Texas and all over the United States.
Watch the “The STORY of Storybook” video to learn how Women’s Storybook Project volunteers are transforming the lives of incarcerated women, their children and caregivers.
Watch the Helping Moms in Prison Read to their Kids video to learn how Women’s Storybook Project volunteers are transforming the lives of incarcerated women, their children and caregivers.
Volunteer Opportunities and How You Can Get Involved
Volunteer in a Prison:
Women who are 18 and over can apply on our website to volunteer as a recorder or laptop volunteer.
On the second and third Saturdays of each month, volunteers use digital recorders to record a mother reading to their child. Each mom is allowed ten minutes recording time per child. After recording, a mother brings the book and recorder to the laptop room. Laptop volunteers upload the recordings and rename each file. Then, each recording is either burned to a cd or saved to be converted later to a URL.
Our community needs more volunteers who are committed to helping children hear their mother’s voices and receive messages of love, year-round.
Volunteer out of Prison:
There are opportunities to help outside of prison visits. Office volunteers are needed to match URL stickers to books and prepare packages for mailing. We also need folks to mail the hundreds of packages sent out each month and prepare supplies for team leaders. These opportunities come in the third and fourth weeks of the month during work hours. Please call the office or email us if you are interested in helping.
The simple act of donating a brand-new book, some mailing envelopes or dollars to fund a new digital recorder or laptop computer makes a big difference. Amazon Wish Lists for books and supplies available on our website.
Spread the Word:
Children of incarcerated women are hidden in plain sight. They are often forgotten. Women’s Storybook Project wants to assure that they are provided with a caring voice, a bedtime story, a reassuring message of love that only a mother’s voice can give. We are the only program of our kind in Texas. Would you help us spread the work about our work? We’d love to come speak to your club, social group, friends, office – anywhere you believe might be a good audience of caring folks.
Get in Touch:
We hope you’ll join us to learn how you can be a part of the Women’s Storybook Project of Texas and make a difference in the lives of children impacted by incarceration. Reach out to us at 512-861-5110 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more!