Since it isn’t possible to invite the community to observe our quilting classes at CCCF, CCQ is creating a traveling exhibit that we’ll take into the community to describe the diversity of the women we serve and the amazing quilts they create. The new exhibit will include photographs taken in our classes, a display of quilts made by our students and signage to tell our story. This project is made possible in part by a grant from the City of Wilsonville. The City’s Opportunity Grant Program funds a variety of projects to further educational and artistic opportunities and foster diversity in the community. The CCQ exhibit will be displayed in the Wilsonville Library during the month of July 2012 and a variety of other venues later in the year.
Coffee Creek Quilters teaches quilting to women in prison and currently there is a need for another instructor to help teach the Wednesday evening class. Prior teaching experience isn’t required, but we need someone with at least advanced-beginner quilting skills and a willingness to work with a wide variety of student learning styles. Patience, good listening skills, and compassion are essential. There are four other instructors and 20 students in the class. Classes are held every Wednesday from 7 pm to 9 pm in the Coffee Creek Correctional Facility dining room. CCCF is located at 24499 SW Grahams Ferry Rd, Wilsonville, OR. Please contact us at 503-257-1320 or email@example.com for additional information.
Over the past ten years, the number of women inmates in prison in Oregon has jumped 86 percent, due to new laws mandating prison for non-violent crimes. (For men, the increase has been just 28 percent.) Hannah Hoffman’s excellent article in Willamette Week offers a detailed look at why women are the fastest-growing group of inmates in Oregon, and the effects of this criminal justice trend.
The article points out that female inmates cost the state more than male inmates, requiring more staff, medicine, programs, counselors and caseworkers. Hoffman writes, “According to [Department of Corrections] statistics, about a third of female prisoners have not completed high school. More strikingly, the vast majority are diagnosed at their medical evaluation as having mental-health issues. Sixty-four percent of the inmates at Coffee Creek have “serious and persistent mental health diagnoses,” such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and chronic depression, according to the DOC. And 89 percent of the inmate population entered prison addicted to drugs or alcohol.” And since about 75 percent of the women are mothers, the State must also pay for foster care for many of their children.