Additional $5K Match Challenge: Tell 5 to help the RMO reach $10K

on Saturday - November 04, 2017.

 

Friends - THANK YOU - YOU ARE EXTRAORDINARY! We feel so incredibly blessed at the strong show of support for the #RMOforReturningCitizens during today's #ExtraGive! And we have GREAT NEWS, and EVEN GREATER NEWS! 

First, the GREAT NEWS: We originally had $10,000 in matching funds, thanks to some ExtraOrdinary, generous anonymous donors! And we have been blessed to receive $10,172 so far in ExtraGive donations - so $10,000 of those donations have been MATCHED, dollar for dollar. 

NOW for the EVEN GREATER NEWS: We have just gotten an ADDITIONAL $5000 in MATCHING FUNDS for donations made between now and midnight: so every additional donation up to $5000 for the rest of the ExtraGive will ALSO be matched, dollar for dollar! 

So, tell your friends, family, acquaintances why YOU believe in the RMO and let's see if we can finish the night meeting this additional match!

Here's the link one more time - and do be sure to ask people to type “RMO” into the field titled “Notes and/or gifts made in memorial/honor” on the donation form so that their donation will be credited to the RMO.

https://extragive.org/designee/community-action-partnership-of-lancaster-county-cap

Thank you so much!

 

The RMO for Returning Citizens (aka Re-Entry Management Organization) is participating in the 2017 ExtraGive under our new parent organization, Community Action Partnership (CAP) of Lancaster County.

And thanks to some very generous RMO supporters, all donations to the RMO up to $10,000 through this year's ExtraOrdinary Give will be MATCHED, dollar for dollar!

So, we're asking our supporters to do two things:
1) Will you please make a donation to the RMO during the ExtraGive? (see details below) and

2) Will you also "TELL FIVE, to help us REACH TEN": Will you please tell FIVE of your friends, colleagues, neighbors, and/or family members why YOU support and believe in the mission of the RMO, and then ask THEM to consider making a donation to the RMO during the ExtraGive as well, so we can fully leverage the $10,000 in matching funds?

As a special "Thank You", every donor who contributes to the RMO during this year's ExtraGive will receive one of our 2018 "Voices of Hope and Resilience" calendars. This inspirational calendar addresses themes such as gratitude, forgiveness, trust, courage, resilience, and much more. All of the art, quotes, and even the graphic design for this calendar were created by our local returning citizens: people who have been incarcerated in Lancaster County Prison or other PA prisons and jails.

Now, for the pertinent details on how to donate through the ExtraGive:

The date of this year's ExtraGive is Friday, November 17, 2017, from 12:01am – 11:59pm.

To donate to the RMO during the ExtraGive, visit CAP's ExtraGive donations page.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Please be sure to type "RMO" into the field titled "Notes and/or gifts made in memorial/honor" on the donation form so that your donation will be credited to the RMO.

https://extragive.org/designee/community-action-partnership-of-lancaster-county-cap

Thank you so much for supporting the RMO in these two meaningful ways. We are so very grateful for your support and encouragement, and our returning citizens are too!

Voices of Hope and Resilience 2018 Inspirational Calendars now available

Written by Melanie G. Snyder on Thursday - September 21, 2017.

We're thrilled to announce that our 2018 "Voices of Hope and Resilience" calendar is now available. This inspirational calendar addresses themes such as gratitude, forgiveness, trust, courage, resilience, and much more. It makes a terrific holiday gift! 

Make a donation to the RMO of $15 or more, and you'll get a free calendar PLUS you'll be providing an additional calendar to a returning citizen to keep track of their meetings and appointments.  

All of the art, quotes and graphic design for this calendar were created by people who have been incarcerated in Lancaster County Prison or other PA prisons and jails.

Get your copy today! Contact us at 717-723-1075 or via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for details, or come to one of our autumn "Trauma and Resilience Series events".  (donations can be made via cash or check payable to "RMO" at one of our events, or you can make an online donation via CAP's secure online donations page at  

http://www.caplanc.org/Donate

and BE SURE TO go to the PROGRAM dropdown list on the donations page and SELECT "RMO for Returning Citizens". Be sure to include your preferred mailing address and we'll mail a calendar to you.

 

 

Trauma trainings for Lancaster County corrections and parole officers

on Friday - July 21, 2017.

The RMO for Returning Citizens recently provided training to over 400 corrections officers and parole officers in Lancaster County. This work was featured in a recent article in the Lancaster Newspaper (link below).

This was a truly collaborative effort, with partners from Spanish American Civic Association, Advoz, CompassMark and Community Action Partnership of Lancaster County all assisting with the training.

The training team was: Melanie Snyder (RMO-lead instructor), Allison Weber (SACA), Vanessa Philbert (CAP), Jen Strasenburgh (CompassMark), & Angela Keen (CCP), and my fantastic RMO interns (both Millersville University students) Lindsay Mays (MSW candidate) & Beckah Shenk (BSW candidate).

We are also very grateful to the Walters / Unitarian Church Trust, an endowment from Art and Selma Walters to the Unitarian Universalist Church of Lancaster (UUCL) for funding part of this training through a grant to the RMO. In awarding this grant, the UUCL Board has acknowledged the contributions of the RMO to achieving the vision of inclusiveness among all humans as well as respect for the dignity and worth of each individual, as promoted by the Walters Trust and UUCL. We are deeply honored to have been awarded this grant from the Walters Trust and UUCL.

This first round of trainings for prison and probation/parole staff is the beginning of the RMO's effort to build the foundation for a trauma-informed criminal justice system in Lancaster County.

Here's the LNP article: 

http://lancasteronline.com/news/local/trauma-informed-training-for-lancaster-county-corrections-and-parole-officers/article_dfc9a524-292f-11e7-b008-8f12e2682c1f.html

 

Trauma-Informed Criminal Justice: Reflections on first round of training

on Friday - March 24, 2017.

We recently completed a first round of trainings about trauma for Lancaster County Prison staff and staff of Lancaster County Adult Probation and Parole. Here are some reflections on lessons learned from this first phase of the RMO's work to build the foundation for a trauma-informed criminal justice system in Lancaster County:

I woke up this morning feeling deeply grateful (and a bit tired . . . and relieved) for the experience this week of offering trainings about trauma to the staff of Lancaster County Prison and Lancaster County Adult Probation & Parole. And, as has been the case throughout my career, I feel like I learned more from them than they did from us.

Six days, eleven classes, 261 trained LCP staff and 44 trained Probation & Parole staff later, here are a few insights from this week:

  • Corrections professionals have some of the most stressful and under-appreciated jobs in our community. The situations they are exposed to and required to handle are often traumatic, yet there’s a general sense that they have to just “deal with it” and “be strong.”
  • One of the things Grace Marie Hamilton taught me is that she always made sure she showed as much care and concern for the people who worked within the criminal justice system as for those caught up in it – and I was reminded time and time again this week of how absolutely wise and essential it is for me to maintain that perspective.
  • Most of the people who came to this week’s trainings take their jobs very seriously, take pride in their profession, and care deeply about doing their jobs thoroughly and well. Many of them already do some of the things suggested in the training. Yet, the nature of the work can take a huge toll on them, and for some, can lead to cynicism, detachment, diminished capacity to show empathy or compassion, and a belief that nothing will ever change – including the people under their “care, custody and control.”
  • The lack of adequate mental health treatment and resources is a genuine crisis in our criminal justice system (not just here in Lancaster – this is a problem in prisons and jails across the entire country – see https://stepuptogether.org/) – and as a result, staff are placed in the untenable position of having to deal with the significant mental health issues of incarcerated people without access to the necessary mental health expertise and resources to truly address people’s underlying needs. This creates an enormous amount of additional stress and trauma for the staff.
  • As we talked about the connections between trauma, addiction and mental health issues, we acknowledged that much of what’s historically been done for people with mental health and addiction issues is like giving someone aspirin and an ice pack for a broken leg: while those measures might temporarily relieve the pain and reduce the swelling, the leg is still broken – and if what’s broken inside is never addressed, it may continue to “cripple” the person.

I’m deeply grateful to my training team: Allison Weber (SACA), Vanessa Philbert (CAP), Jen Strasenburgh (CompassMark), & Angela Keen (CCP), and my fantastic RMO interns (both Millersville University students) Lindsay Mays (MSW candidate) & Beckah Shenk (BSW candidate).

We are also very grateful to the Walters / Unitarian Church Trust, an endowment from Art and Selma Walters to the Unitarian Universalist Church of Lancaster (UUCL) for funding part of this training through a grant to the RMO. In awarding this grant, the UUCL Board has acknowledged the contributions of the RMO to achieving the vision of inclusiveness among all humans as well as respect for the dignity and worth of each individual, as promoted by the Walters Trust and UUCL. We are deeply honored to have been awarded this grant from the Walters Trust and UUCL.

This first round of trainings for prison and probation/parole staff is the beginning of the RMO’s effort to build the foundation for a trauma-informed criminal justice system in Lancaster County. There’s more to come…but I’m hopeful that this week’s trainings helped to start the conversation.