AFSC: Good Neighbor Project
The Good Neighbor Project is a co-mentorship program designed to match free-world individuals with Michigan prisoners who are serving Life or Long Indeterminate sentences. Many of these prisoners have been incarcerated for so long that they have lost their network of social support from family, friends, and the community. It is through letter or email correspondences that our co-mentors develop strong and meaningful relationships that are meant to promote transformation, redemption and healing. The reciprocal relationship provides an opportunity for both free-world and incarcerated individuals to grow and learn from each other. This program aims to give prisoners a voice and shed a light on the hardships of enduring prison and the problem with relying on long sentences to address deeply rooted social issues.
The Michigan Prison Doula Initiative has partnered with the Good Neighbor Project in order to connect with currently pregnant mothers or moms who have had a baby in prison. Through this co-mentorship process, women on the inside are able to communicate with doulas and other volunteers in order to create strong and lasting relationships, as well as learn about the difficulties they face in prison, first-handedly. Our goal is to cultivate the bond between women on the outside and women inside to ease these hardships and foster hope for motherhood beyond bars.