|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
||For More Information, Contact:
|May 8, 2012
Director of Communications
Mothers Program Graduate Receives Early Mother's Gift
A 27-year-old mother of three received what she considers to be an early Mother's Day Gift: the strength to leave a relationship she describes as abusive and the opportunity to regain custody of her three young children.
Ally is one of six mothers, ranging in age from their early-20's to mid-30's, who recently graduated from the 12-week Mothers Program at Boston Municipal Court-West Roxbury. The ceremony will mark the 27th class of graduates since the program was introduced in 1998. The Mothers Program—one of the longest running--has served as a model for other Probation-established parenting programs across the state.
The Mothers Program has graduated approximately 300 women since it was first established 14 years ago as part of the Reinventing Justice Program introduced by BMC-West Roxbury First Justice Kathleen Coffey and Assistant Chief Probation Officer Helen Brown. Probation Officer II Crystal Young also plays a key role in facilitating the program.
“The goals of the Mothers Program are to reduce recidivism, educate mothers on probation about providing safe and stable homes for their children and resources to assist women in meeting the challenges of motherhood,” said Judge Coffey.
Brown added, “We work to enlighten women about the many resources available to them while helping them to change their behavior and improve their lives which by extension, makes life better for their children.”
Ally is one of the many women who have found answers to the dilemmas in her life through the Mothers Program. She along with the other graduates met at the courthouse weekly where they attended lectures and interactive sessions on issues that included such topics as domestic violence, substance abuse, employment, parenting, and nutrition education.
“This program, the Mothers Program, helped me big time. Before, I did not know that there are programs out there that would help me. I am from South America. My kids were taken away by someone who told me they would help me. Instead, they took my kids and would not let me see them. In America, you can speak up and people will help you. I will be going back to court and I know that I will be getting my kids back.”
It was during the sessions that Ally learned there are programs to assist her escape from what she describes as an emotionally abusive relationship.
Ally, whose case is Pre-Trial, was referred to the program through Probate & Family Court Probation after she was accused of not caring for her children. The other graduates are on probation for offenses that include assault and battery, larceny under, drug charges, and fraudulent check cashing.
“We are very pleased with the program and the progress it has made in helping women, who are mothers, get back on track,” said Brown.