‘I rise to be a better me,’ CP,
Like Maya Angelou, wiVT writers at Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility rise from their pain, their fear, their history. Last month, 25 community guests witnessed their voices raised with determination:
They’re taken my true meaning,
the light that lives in me
eclipsed by ugly rhetoric …
I sit, I burn, I crumble.
Still, like dust, I rise.
I rise to be a better me …
Our writers welcome the weekly space for engagement, reflection, comfort, healing. Their writing transforms personal suffering into shared experience. As they make meaning of their lives, they learn skills — accountability, respect, confidence — that help re-entry and re-integration into their communities upon release. By sharing their stories, they help you understand who they are, how prison impacts their lives — and how you impact them.
WON’T YOU PLEASE RISE TO SUPPORT THEM
- weekly skill- and community-building
- community education via our writers’ blog
- publication of participant work and public readings
- team training for program integrity and uniqueness
- encouragement to each writer to rise into their best self
Sarah W. Bartlett, MA, Founding Co-Director
Meghan Reynolds, MFA, Co-Director
Melissa Pasanen, Kristin Brownlow, Kassie Tibbott, Kathryn Baudreau, Tobe Zalinger, Dorsey Naylor, program assistants.
P.S. This year we started two ‘writing outside’ groups for justice-involved women in South Burlington and Randolph. W VT College of Fine Arts intern has devoted the fall to gathering writings from the past few years for LIFELINES, which we plan to publish in 2018 . Thank you, Bianca!! Stay tuned for publication details as they unfold.
Thanks to generous individual support from you, our donors; grants from Bari and Peter Dreissigacker, The Richard E. and Deborah L.Tarrant Foundation, Ben & Jerry’s Foundation, Inc. and Serena Foundation; and our home organization, South Burlington Community Justice Center (SB CJC), we are able to continue providing this unique program to Vermont’s incarcerated women.