Reparation through reading: a collaborative approach to adult and family literacy in Western Australian prisons

JONES, Jane (2014) Reparation through reading: a collaborative approach to adult and family literacy in Western Australian prisons. Paper presented at: IFLA WLIC 2014 - Lyon - Libraries, Citizens, Societies: Confluence for Knowledge in Session 169 - Literacy and Reading. In: IFLA WLIC 2014, 16-22 August 2014, Lyon, France.

Bookmark or cite this item: http://library.ifla.org/id/eprint/893
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Language: English (Original)
Available under licence Creative Commons Attribution.

Abstract

Reparation through reading: a collaborative approach to adult and family literacy in Western Australian prisons

An estimated 70% of adult prisoners in Western Australia have literacy issues to some extent. Poor literacy is generational – parents with low literacy skills struggle to support their children in attaining the experiences they need to develop good reading habits and school readiness skills. Therefore supporting the literacy needs of prisoners gives them a better chance of finding a job or continuing their education on release and can contribute to breaking the cycle of generational illiteracy. Adults with family responsibilities are often more motivated to improve their literacy skills in order to help their children be better prepared for school. Successful family literacy programs recognise that as well as encouraging sound literacy practices for children, they must offer parent support and education as well as linking families with the resources necessary to develop these skills and activities. A cross-sector approach between Better Beginnings, WA Corrective Services and prison based family support services has enabled the development and delivery of accredited foundation adult literacy units integrating family literacy principles. Incarcerated parents are learning age appropriate activities to share with their children while at the same time developing their own literacy skills. Participants then go on to apply these skills during family visits and establish pathways to further education.

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