The bureau hosted its inaugural Daddy-Daughter dance to create an enduring memory, one that can carry inmates to the outside world with a different perspective and offer daughters the hope that there will be more such moments. It is part of the bureau’s broader reentry program to reach out to the children and families of offenders and strengthen their bonds, critical for transitioning back home. “You are a key to the success of your father,” Federal Bureau of Prisons Director Charles E. Samuels Jr., told the 20 girls, aged 4 to 18, who had assembled to meet their fathers, all minimum-security, nonviolent offenders.The whole article is worth a read, and there are some great pictures by Al Diaz at the Herald link.
In a third-floor prison meeting space transformed into a ballroom with a fairytale theme, 13 fathers in suits and ties and tuxedos spent two hours with their girls, this long-held tradition unfolding without the harshness of uniforms and visiting rooms and prison walls. They danced. They swayed. They held tight. They laughed. They cried. And these fathers who have been gone for years remembered the chapters they had missed: birthdays, holidays, first tooth, first crush, first heartbreak.
Some of the girls are so young, they only know a father confined; others are old enough to remember what life was like when their father was home.
“I haven’t been there for so many special moments,” said inmate Michael Rangel, 40, his eyes welling up. The father of three daughters has been in prison almost three years for cargo theft and is scheduled to enter a halfway house in January. “I talk to them and email them all the time, but it’s not the same as being there.”
Friday, November 07, 2014
FDC-Miami holds first Daddy-Daughter Dance
This is both incredible and awfully sad at the same time (via the Miami Herald):