The AFOI mission is to prevent the breakdown of relationships among inmates and their families by providing regular, meaningful visitation, support and education services. Our services help prepare families for a successful transition when the inmate is released from prison. AFOI is one of only a handful of such programs to provide these services in Virginia and across the United States.
The AFOI mission is to prevent the breakdown of relationships among inmates and their families by providing regular, meaningful visitation, support, referral and education services. Our services help families and loved ones throughout the period of incarceration and also prepare families for a successful transition when the inmate is released from prison back into our community. Assisting Families of Inmates is one of only a handful of such programs to provide these services in Virginia and across the United States.
AFOI services include:
- A Transportation Program which provides regular visiting-day transportation on Saturdays to many of Virginia's prisons, correctional centers, correctional units and work centers
- A children's visitation program for children with an incarcerated parent
- A hot meal when buses return at the end of the visiting day, coordinated by our dedicated volunteers and partnering groups and organizations
- Individual and group services that help families cope with issues associated with having an incarcerated loved one
- Assistance to families, and inmates, with resource referrals to other agencies that aid with education, legal issues, reentry, housing, employment, transportation and childcare, etc.
- Information on prison rules and regulations including visiting procedures and proper dress code policies
- The Milk and Cookies (MAC) Children's Program which provides supportive group services and programming for children with incarcerated parents, and their caregivers
- A Video Visitation Program which provides the opportunity for families to visit with their incarcerated loved ones via video visitation technology
- Other collaborative, community efforts including the All God's Children Summer Camps through the Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church and the Mentoring Children of Prisoners Program through Big Brothers Big Sisters of Richmond
- Many opportunities for community involvement through volunteering
Who do you serve?
Last year (2010-2011) AFOI provided over 3,100 transportation visits and over 250 video visits to Virginia’s correctional facilities. For the majority of our clients, Assisting Families of Inmates is the only means by which they can maintain regular, supportive contact with their incarcerated relatives, family members and loved ones.