TURN THE PAGE LITERACY INITIATIVE
ABOUT THE PROGRAM
Turn the Page Literacy Initiative brings creative writing classes and reading discussion groups into the Hamilton County and the Silverdale Detention Facilities. In a system that concentrates on punishment rather than rehabilitation, educational programs such as this have been shown to help men and woman as they reenter society.
Turn the Page began in January of 2015 with one reading group of fifteen participants at the Bradley County Jail. In the years that have followed, this program has served hundreds of incarcerated men and women, offering respite from the day-to-day struggle of serving time and creating opportunities for growth and transformation through literacy.
Crafted by Turn the Page participants.
In these groups, we read, write, talk, and listen. We speak, but we don’t interrupt. We offer comfort but not judgment. We learn about reading and comprehension strategies, authors’ pasts, literary movements, ways in which history interacts with literature, and common literary techniques to prepare us for complicated reasoning and advanced learning in future endeavors.
We take the time to think about the things we have done in our lives and reflect on the things we are going to do in the future, but we realize that it is not up to us to evaluate each other’s pasts or put others down. We come to know how others in our group feel and think, and by doing that, we’re able to understand each other better.
By encountering diverse opinions of the literature as a group, we are able to make better sense of the reading. We welcome women–regardless of their alleged charges–from any national, ethnic, cultural, religious or spiritual background so that we can engage in the fullest possible understanding of the world in which we live.
We exercise our minds by discussing various aspects of life on the outside and life on the inside and relate our experiences to the things we read. We discuss things that people in the free world should know about jail and prison, and we use what we read to make ourselves more compassionate, more thoughtful, and more prepared for the challenges of the world, and in doing so, we become closer as a group.
Turn the Page is a rapidly growing program in the Hamilton County area and has potential to expand into new facilities as we train new facilitators. We are seeking dedicated, passionate individuals to become Turn the Page Facilitators. Facilitators undergo a multi-faceted training process before they can lead sessions at the facility.
Experience teaching adults and/or experience working with incarcerated learners
Background in English, social work, psychology, etc
Masters or Ph.D. preferred (but not necessarily required)
New Facilitator Training with Turn the Page
Volunteer Training at Hamilton County Jail or Silverdale Correctional Facility
For further information, please contact Victoria Bryan (firstname.lastname@example.org)