There are few, if any, programs in the Sunnyside and Third Ward areas in Harris County that address these converging issues. WHEW’s target objectives are to service these women and to support them in not returning to prison, abusive relationships, and homelessness. WHEW seeks to address key problems such as employment, job skills and training, and other essential needs for this disenfranchised clientele. Moreover, WHEW seeks to meet the needs of clients who appear to be undesired by other institutions. In addition, WHEW empowers women globally by creating employment and projects that are beneficial to their communities of origin.
Helping The Community Phase I of WHEW’s development includes the following current and future domestic programs and services:
Connect-the-Dots Workshop– To provide interactive media and cultural literacy seminars and workshops on the local/global relationship between prison and Hip-Hop culture. Since 2001, these workshops have been conducted in state prisons and jails in Wallkill, New York and Houston, Texas.
Workshops showcase not only the negativeaspects of the two cultures’ relationships, but also the negative impact that symbiosishas on African-American women, men, and families, resulting in domestic violenceproblems that persist before, during, and after becoming part of the criminal justicesystem.
Employment Assistance–To provide referrals and job placement.
Job Skills and Training–To teach women about computer data entry, website design and maintenance, inventory and distribution of goods, fashion design and accessory items, cosmetology, and culinary arts.
Counseling–To provide HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention workshops, substance
Abuse awareness and prevention workshops, and artistic and cultural therapy via creative writing indigenous African and Native American dance forms, and Native American folklore so that individuals and families can explore an arts-based approach to building self-esteem and thereby reduce the number of women returning to prison.
Reinforcing our Commitment Phase II of WHEW’s development includes the following current and future domestic programs and services:
Financial Literacy–To implement mandatory workshops to help clients raise their standard of living by setting up IDA accounts to build assets, providing mandatory literacy instruction, and emphasizing money management skills, including future financial planning and training for their specific asset goals.
Youth Choice–To instruct children of formerly incarcerated parents, who live in transitional housing and domestic violence centers, about career and lifestyle options that can end the cycle of abuse and incarceration.
Seeds Planting Seeds–This program educates youth about nutrition, preservation of the ecosystem, and ways to combat hunger. Children of formerly incarcerated parents, youth who were formerly (juvenile) incarcerated, and other young people from the community will be the primary participants in the program.
Housing Assistance–To provide referrals, rental assistance, and home-buyer education.
Health Care–To provide referrals, holistic nutritional education, preventative/alternative methods of promoting wellness, and information about reproductive justice.