Rev. Annie M. Bovian, Executive DirectorAppeal Letter for Easter 2013

In the past two years, many nonprofit programs have had to make tremendous sacrifices in order to weather these economic times. Women’s Advocate Ministry, Inc. (WAM) is one of those nonprofits. However, our services have remained the same in serving our clients in the prisons and jails by relying more on those marvelous angels called volunteers. [Read More]

Over the nearly 29 years of its existence, WAM has consistently supported women inmates by working to improve their quality of life while in prison and improving their possibilities to integrate themselves back into society and avoid recidivism after release.

WAM, a small organization trying to help those who cannot help themselves, in the past has received a New York City Council Proclamation in honor of our work. WAM’s clients are primarily African American and Hispanic between the ages of 16 and 35. At least 85% of them are low-level drug users with little or no education.

Needless to say, your continued help is desperately needed at this time in helping to keep our mission alive in helping those who are disenfranchised in our society and we ask you to Dare to Care.

Help us to meet this ever present challenge with your generous donation today. Thank you.

Yours Sincerely,

Rev. Annie M. Bovian

Executive Director

Women’s Advocate Ministry is a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit organization and all donations are tax deductible as allowable by law.

To make a donation, please contact Rev. Annie Bovian
by phone: 212-280-7320
or via e-mail: annie@wamusa.org

Correctional Association of New York

Governor Cuomo Plans to Close Prisons

On March 22, 2011, the Correctional Association of New York brought 300 advocates to Albany to urge state leaders to close underutilized prisons and reform the state’s badly broken juvenile justice system. Then, a little while later, Governor Andrew Cuomo, Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver announced their plans to close 3,700 prison beds and to shut down more than 30% of Office of Children and Family Services’ (OCFS) youth facilities. [Read More]

This represents the most significant commitment to date by elected officials to reduce the state’s excess prison capacity.

Closing prisons and juvenile facilities is long overdue. Our state’s juvenile justice system is currently operating at approximately 50% capacity; the adult prison population has dropped by over 15,000 people in the past decade; and the state system has nearly 8,000 empty beds maintained at enormous cost — one that our state literally can no longer afford.

The Correctional Association continues to encourage state government officials to continue to build on and strengthen their impressive commitment. To ensure that New York continues to make communities safer, CA has urged the governor and legislative leaders to reinvest funds saved by prison closures in community-based alternative-to-incarceration and reentry programs and needed services for incarcerated adults and children. Such reinvestment will maximize New York’s ability to reduce recidivism, decrease its prison population and maintain safe prisons.

Elected officials should seize this opportunity to improve the lives of children and families, increase public safety, and become national leaders for juvenile and criminal justice reform.

To get involved in the CA’s direct advocacy efforts around juvenile justice reform or prison downsizing, please contact Jax at JuvenileJusticeCoalition@gmail.com or Kirsten at kescobar@correctionalassociation.org.

Correctional Association of New York

Treatment Behind Bars: New Report Released on In-prison Substance Abuse Programs

The CA’s Prison Visiting Project (PVP) has released the first-ever comprehensive review of the New York State’s prison-based substance abuse treatment programs. Treatment Behind Bars: Substance Abuse Treatment in New York State Prisons, 2007–2010 culminates a three-year study conducted by the project, including visits to 23 prisons; interviews with experts, treatment staff and participants; and the analysis of over 2,300 inmate surveys and system-wide data. [Read More]

In addition to the general prison monitoring work through which the Prison Visiting Project (PVP) regularly examines substance abuse treatment programs in prisons.

Substance Abuse Treatment Study

In March 2011, PVP released the first-ever comprehensive review of the state’s prison-based substance abuse treatment programs. The report, Treatment Behind Bars: Substance Abuse Treatment in New York State Prisons, 2007–2010 culminates a three-year study conducted by the PVP, including visits to 23 prisons; interviews with experts, treatment staff and participants; and the analysis of over 2,300 inmate surveys and system-wide data.

Especially given the current focus on cost savings, public health and public safety, the report creates significant opportunities for New York policy makers in four important areas:

  • improving the effectiveness of prison treatment programs;
  • using existing evidence-based instruments and programming to reduce the current costs of providing treatment in New York’s prisons;
  • making a difference in communities affected by high recidivist rates and drug use; and,
  • promoting best practices that, in effect, provide national leadership for policy makers and prison officials committed to curbing drug abuse among currently and formerly incarcerated individuals.

Correctional Association of New York

Women in Prison Project Releases Fact Sheets

There are many issues confronting the treatment of women in prison and their families, especially their children. The CA’s Women in Prison Project (WIPP) has compiled and researched eight fact sheets about women in prison, available here as downloadable PDFs. WAM is a member organization of the Coalition for Women Prisoners in New York State which includes WIPP, an affiliate of the Correctional Association of New York. For more information, you may call WIPP at 212.254.5700.

WIPP Fact Sheets

Part of Book Proceeds Will Be Donated to WAM

Part of the proceeds from the sale of Anthology of Souls will be donated to Women’s Advocate Ministry to help clothe babies born to incarcerated women. Carolyn Jones, a media educator, co-authored this poignant and riveting collection of life stories with eight of her students.

For a full review and details on how to order Anthology of Souls,
see our Resources page.