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The United States has the highest prison population in the world, with over 2 million individuals who are currently incarcerated and almost 5 million under some form of supervisory or custodial control of the criminal justice system.
Although, only 7% of the prison population is women and girls, the amount of women and girls incarcerated has risen almost 700% since the 1980s. Women in prison face many problems; some resulting from their lives prior to incarceration, others resulting from their imprisonment itself. Many of these women and girls in prison have experienced victimization, unstable family life, substance abuse and mental health problems. Social factors such as poverty, minority group, poverty, food and housing insecurities, trauma, and lack of education play a role in marginalizing their participation in mainstream society and contribute to the rising number of women in prison.
According to the Sentencing Project, the number of incarcerated women ballooned from 26,378 in 1980 to 215,332 in 2014. The arrest rate of girls also has skyrocketed during the same period. The push to incarcerate more women and girls ignores the social and psychological forces that often underlie female offending.
Upon release, women and girls face an uphill battle as they return to their respective communities. Many suffer from significant health challenges, difficulty obtaining employment, lack of education, housing insecurities and lack of job training skills. Without comprehensive supports, they are likely to return to prison. While the complexity of women's reentry can be daunting, A Beautiful HEART Ministries provide resources, and programs that help to achieve successful reentry.
Frustratingly, despite the services that we provide and the success rate, we are lacking the funding to help more women and girls who desperately need help. Consider making a donation to A Beautiful HEART Ministries by clicking on the donate button or select one of the option below. Thank you for your support.