Another Week Beyond – 2029

Beyond Another Week Beyond, Family Group Conference, Family Group Conference, Restorative Justice, youth Leave a Comment

Dear Friends,

Morris (AWB – 2026) was all smiles as he got onto a WhatsApp video call with 2 volunteer mentors. One is a psychologist running his own practice and the other, an operations manager at a health and wellness business.  Last week, the Court considered the supplementary report from his probation officer and he was given a 21-month probation order. He is to remain indoors from 10 pm to 6 am and will be electronically monitored for 6 months. He must also perform 80 hours of community service and his mother has been bonded to ensure his good behaviour and that he does not ride a motorcycle. He is due for a Performance Accountability Court Review in 4 months and Morris is certain that he will ace that.  It has been more that 10 days but Morris, his family and friends are still filled with joy and gratitude that he was not incarcerated. 

The mentoring session got off to a good start as the art of tattooing was discussed animatedly and personal stories were shared. Morris who is currently employed as a tattoo artist held court when he talked shop, but he listened contemplatively when the mentors revealed some of their life experiences. Morris nodded often and muttered “Me too.”   

Being granted probation was a happy outcome, but the family group conferences we facilitate cannot guarantee such. They are meant to give people the opportunity to participate in important decisions that impact their lives. Thus, we asked Morris, “Imagine that you are now in a cell at the Reformative Training Centre, what would you say was valuable about the family group conference?” He winced upon hearing the question but after a few moments replied, “I never imagined that my family and friends will come together to help me. I felt so happy but also sad to see them worried about me.”  His aunt who was present at the conference elaborated, “It was meaningful to see people talking honestly and trying their best to solve a problem. I did not think we will be able to help Morris, but it felt good trying our best to do so.”

We will continue to support the efforts of Morris and his family group and we wish them well.

Wishing you health and peace of mind.

Sincerely,

Gerard

“Some of the famost beautiful things we have in life comes from our mistakes.” ― Surgeo Bell

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