Inmates’ children are often isolated from others because of the shame of their parent’s experience. Due to poverty, they find themselves deprived of many things. The lack of attention in caregiving is also common because their sole caregiver is often too pre-occupied with their own problems. One of the objectives of Family Care is to offer practical help to parents with young children.
Care Club is a weekly children’s club which started in 2005. Here, enrichment activities such as tuition classes, reading-for-fun, music, art and dance are organised on Saturdays with the help of volunteers. Care Club also organises outings and camps to provide fun-filled activities for inmates’ children during school holidays. These activities provide a platform for volunteers to develop friendships with the children and their parents. Such friendships are invaluable in helping inmates’ families cope with the inmates’ absence as well as their eventual return to the family. About 80 events have been organised in 2013 for children in the PFS Care Club.
The Care Club programme has evolved since it started and now includes family support, bursaries for children, financial assistance, leadership and modelling programmes, with a strong emphasis in holistic family work.
Through Care Club, we intend to promote opportunities for families to build bonds between children and parent(s) within the prison system. Whilst doing this, we provide meaningful and educational activities for children of school-going age who are normally disadvantaged because of their family background.