SCV News | Inmates Reunited with their Children at Carnival Event
Personnel from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Inmate Services Bureau’s Education Based Incarceration Unit and Religious and Volunteer Services Unit allowed approximately 23 male inmates to invite their children and grandchildren, five to 17 years of age, to attend a carnival in a grassy area outside the jail compound that is removed from other inmates.
The carnival included food, music, and entertaining carnival games.
“The Returning Hearts Celebration” is a one day event that unites children with their incarcerated fathers.
The celebration is an integral part of a parenting program sponsored by the Inmate Services Bureau that teaches inmates how to become better fathers by promoting personal growth, accountability, and decision making. This event is an excellent way for incarcerated fathers to reconnect and bond with their children. Visits which include personal contact between parents and children are very unusual in the county jail system and can only take place under controlled conditions such as this special event.
The Returning Hearts Celebration was hosted by Grace Baptist Church, Santa Clarita. They provided volunteers, food, and fun activities for the EBI inmates who are enrolled in various educational programs while in custody. This was the eighth year this annual event has been held.
Approximately 34 children were invited to participate in the celebration. The children were chaperoned by volunteers from Awana Lifeline Ministries. Since the purpose of the celebration is specifically for uniting Fathers and their children, no other family members were allowed to attend.
Inmate Services Bureau is responsible for managing 67 inmate educational and vocational programs within seven Los Angeles County jails. There are approximately 18,000 inmates in the Los Angeles County jail system. Within that population more than 6,000 inmates are currently participating in educational programs. For more about these programs, visit the EBI website at: www.EBI.lasd.org(c) 2016 SCVTV