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A CCQ student publishes her memoir

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Karen Campbell was convicted of a felony for driving intoxicated and causing a fatal car crash that killed two people. She served six years at Coffee Creek Correctional Facility and has now published a book about her experiences. Falling: Hard Lessons and the Redemption of the Woman Next Door is available from Amazon in paperback and Kindle versions.

In her memoir, Karen describes her life before the accident, the harsh realities of prison life, and the path to atonement after release from prison. As she says:

“Falling is the story of how a middle-aged mom learns to navigate life on the Inside. Over the six years I was incarcerated, I learned how to eat a meal in 10 minutes with a spork. I learned obedience and humility. I learned lurid slang. I learned how to keep my mouth shut. I learned how to mother from behind bars, miles from my teenage daughters. And finally, I learned how to love the unloveable, including myself.”

During her time at CCCF, Karen participated in the Coffee Creek Quilters program. She made two quilts for charity and one to keep. Her personal quilt is a beach scene, illustrating her dream for release. Here’s what Karen has to say about her experiences in our program:

“My teacher from the Coffee Creek Quilters, Marjorie, was both an angel and an artist. Her quilts were landscapes and had international renown. She treated me as a student, and fellow human being who dreamed in colors besides beige and prison blue. Creating the quilt was a hands-on example of the skills I would need for parole. Marjorie encouraged me to challenge myself, step back, evaluate, make adjustments, and try again, eyes on the prize. After I released, I hung the landscape quilt of the Caribbean above my bed. Nine years, two months and five days after I was released from prison, the quilt still hangs in its place above my bed. My gratitude to the Coffee Creek Quilters.”

Our students

A CCQ student shares her quilts

Every so often, we hear from women who took our quilting class after they’ve been released from CCCF. Here’s a message we recently received from Celia along with pictures of three of her quilts:

I just wanted to thank you ladies for giving me the opportunity to take the quilting class at Coffee Creek. These are just a couple of quilts I’ve done since being out. The pink one is also a log cabin. Of course I see after the fact of using all black for the dark, it’s harder to see. I thought at the time it was a good idea. Again I truly wanted to thank you for all the knowledge you ladies gave me.
Celia

We think Celia’s quilts are beautiful!

Our students

A message from a former student

A messageCCQ has been teaching quilting classes at the Coffee Creek Correctional Facility since 2002. Here’s a message we recently received from a student in our very first class:

“I was sitting at my table this evening, finishing a quilt, and I thought of the first quilt I ever made. I learned to quilt in the very first cccf quilting class! I think my instructor’s name was Marge….but after this long, I can’t remember.

I wanted to email and thank the women who generously donate their time to this program. Quilting has been an outlet for me over these last 17 years and helped me through tough times.

Many times, those who work in corrections never hear the success stories, sometimes they are very few and far between. I released in 2003 and I started college. I now have my masters degree in education and work as a teacher at deer ridge correctional institution.

Thank you for being a part of my journey and for giving of yourselves to people who many have given up on. I feel blessed for having been a part of your program.”

Angie

Our students