For mothers leaving prison, finding
a place to live with their children has been a significant challenge. But a new
collaboration with Corrections, Probation and partnership with Family Works, Presbyterian
Northern means Monte is providing safe, warm homes for mothers to begin
rebuilding their lives.
In May, Monte welcomed our first
mother and her child into our emergency housing. Their arrival comes after a
lot of work to bring together key players to support a growing number of
mothers leaving prison on parole, that may have previously been placed with
their children in lodges and other risky or unhealthy housing options.
Monte has worked to establish a
memorandum of understanding with Presbyterian Northern and collaborate with
Corrections, Probation and Oranga Tamariki—Ministry for Children, to create a
process where mums are given access to Monte’s housing services, and support
from Presbyterian Northern’s social workers. Family Works social workers are
highly skilled in the complexities these women have to deal with not only while
incarcerated but especially on release.
A member of the team noted that
working with these mothers, to help them create the best possible environment
for themselves and their children, is making a real difference in the lives of
women who aren’t used to people going the extra mile or taking care of them:
“There were hugs & tears all round. This lady could not believe the efforts
that had been gone too. The place was set up so well and made so homely.”
CEO says: “A great result that demonstrates our objective of looking for and
collectively advancing creative solutions that enable us to be the ambulance at
the top of the cliff, not at the bottom”.