RESTORATIVE JUSTICE: THE PATH TO PRISON REFORM

Healing the ripples of harm caused by crime is not easy, but that is the challenge the Prison Ministry Project of the United Church of Christ in Wisconsin has taken on to fix a broken criminal justice system. While politicians campaign on being “tough on crime” and accuse opponents of being “soft on crime,” Rev. Jerry Hancock, director of the Prison Ministry Project says that “smart on crime” is what we desperately need.

On this program, Rev. Hancock describes how the Prison Ministry Project uses Restorative Justice guidelines to work inside the walls of Wisconsin prisons.  Here they bring together offenders, surrogate victims, and the community to talk together openly and honestly in an effort to heal the harm caused by the crime. The programs are non-sectarian and have no explicit religious content.

Also on All About Living tomorrow is David Haskin, a founder of the Wisconsin Prison Mindfulness Initiative. Using effective mindfulness-based interventions with prisoners, prison staff, and prison volunteers, this initiative is focused on transforming individual lives as well as transforming the entire corrections system to mitigate its destructive impact on families, communities, and society as a whole. 

Both Restorative Justice programs are directed toward creating a criminal justice system that genuinely and intelligently focuses on public safety and harm reduction rather than punishment or revenge.

WYSO IS MUSIC TO OUR EARS

WYSO, the Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestra, which began over 50 years ago, has grown to provide a full array of orchestral training and performance opportunities to over 400 young musicians between the ages of 8 and 18. Three full orchestras, two string orchestras, a chamber music program and a broad selection of ensembles and workshops make up the core of the WYSO program. 

On this All About Living program, you will be treated to an amazing performance by one of the WYSO string quartets. Members of the quartet are local high school students Anne Sophie Brilla, Meera Bradley, Monona Suzuki, and Andrew Siehr. Sharing the WYSO story are Bridget Fraser, Executive Director, Cyrena Pondrom, a longtime WYSO supporter, and Karl Lavine, Director of the WYSO Chamber Music Program. 

Performances are integral to the WYSO program. Unless otherwise indicated, concerts are held on the UW-Madison campus. For more information about upcoming WYSO performances, go to wysomusic.org.

SAILING INTO THE GOLDEN YEARS

Someday will never come, until it does!  The birthdays are adding up, and you begin to wonder what those final chapters are going to look like. Enter AgeBetter, Inc,, the parent organization of SAIL (Sharing Active Independent Lives). SAIL’s mission is to enable members over 55 to live secure, engaged lives on their own terms. SAIL strongly adheres to the philosophy that “It takes a village” and is designed to help people stay independent by staying connected – and definitely enjoying the journey. SAIL is a members-driven organization that offers a full range of connections to people, resources, fun, support and healthy relationships.

On this program, Ann Albert, founding Executive Director of AgeBetter, Inc., and SAIL, describes how SAIL has evolved since its beginning days in the early 2000s and how it is embracing the village model to counter the effects of loneliness on health and independence and to enhance opportunities to live a purposeful life. Joining Ann is Dana Warren, a SAIL member volunteer. She is a former city Realtor, a master gardener and passionate about universal design. In her retirement years, she focuses her time on using her skills to give back to the community, having her voice heard, and building diversity within the SAIL membership.

More information is available on www.sailtoday.org.

YOU’RE NEVER TOO OLD TO DO SOMETHING NEW

Guest: Peggy Trojan

Peggy Trojan published her first poem in 2010. She was seventy-seven years old. Her inspiration came from a class on poetry writing she decided to take in her mid-seventies. After reading one of her poems, her instructor encouraged her to submit it for publication. That was the beginning. Since then she has been published in a wide variety of journals and anthologies and has written several books of poetry.

Peggy Trojan grew up in the north woods of Wisconsin where she enjoyed her life as an educator, wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. It is from this history that she has drawn the content of her poems. Her latest book of poetry, ALL THAT MATTERS: Collected Poems 2010-2018, depicts, in the gracefulness of the words she’s chosen, stories of real life and the tender, sensitive moments she experienced.

Peggy shares her personal story and how she has woven her observations of life into the poetry she has written. Enjoy also some of the poignant poems included in her latest collection, ALL THAT MATTERS.

SIMPSON STREET FREE PRESS SPEAKS OUT

Guests: Jim Kramer, Executive Director; Taylor Kilgore, Managing Editor; Josepha Da Costa, LaFollette H.S. freshman and Teen Editor, Simpson Street Free Press

When it comes to developing professional journalistic skills – researching the facts and verifying them, learning to write clearly and concisely, and editing and revising for increased clarity and accuracy, the Simpson Street Free Press is exemplary – living by the standard, “Never hand in a first draft.”

The Simpson Street Free Press began over 25 years ago as a neighborhood non-profit focused on engaging kids in learning through writing and literacy. SSFP currently produces seven publications. Students begin as early as third grade, and SSFP graduates serve as editors. High school students take on leadership roles. Middle school writer focus on science, history, geography and books.

On this program, Jim Kramer, one of the SSFP founders, Taylor Kilgore and Josepha Da Costa, a LaFollette H.S. freshman and a Teen Editor share the story of SSFP’s remarkable journalistic journey and their current concern, the achievement gap in reading skills in the Madison schools.

Hear what Madison students are focused on and reporting through the Simpson Street Free Press.