Program That Allows Families To See Loved Ones Outside Of Normal Visiting Hours At Wakulla Correctional

By: Emily Johnson Email
By: Emily Johnson Email

By: Emily Johnson
March 21, 2014

Tallahassee, FL - Each quarter on a weekday JC and Gary Montgomery come to Wakulla Correctional Institution with some special guests for their Living Stones International ministry.

"We found that especially with the men in state prison here in Florida 55% of them never receive a visit," said Josephine Gamboa-Montgomery of Living Stones International.

Their program, Children of Inmates is in it's second year. It allows for the children of parents who are in prison see their mom or father four times a year on a weekday.

"We started with just a few men and our program has now grown to two other facilities Liberty Correctional Institution and Gadsden Women's Facility," said Gamboa-Montgomery.

"I can say that Living Stones, it's been good. I've been in the program for quite a while," said Stevie Taylor, Inmate at Wakulla Correctional.

Taylor is serving time until 2019. On Friday his three daughters and four grandchildren visited him with Children of Inmates. Taylor said he never would have reconnected with his family if it weren't for the program.

"This is basically for my grand kids and the bond that they keep between us. Mr. Montgomery and his wife, they're beautiful people. They're loving and caring people," said Taylor thanking JC and Gary for their hard work in the program.

Many programs at Wakulla Correctional are volunteer based just like Children of Inmates.

"The inmates really enjoy it because they go through parenting class ahead of time, so it gives them a chance to bond more with their children," said Cindy Swier, Asst. Warden at Wakulla Correctional.

So far Living Stones International has impacted 114 children and 53 caregivers. Wakulla Correctional said they see the benefits in the program and will continue to host it just as it has been on a quarterly basis.

If you have a loved one at Wakulla Correctional or at the other two prisons mentioned and want to get involved in the program you can contact Living Stones International at (850)765-0320.

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