Massachusetts

Runs the Dhamma Dana Publication Fund that distributes scholarly Buddhist books freely [dana] to inmates and non-inmates. No inside programs.

Weekly meditation classes are taught by volunteers at the Suffolk County House of Corrections (the Boston county jail). Drawing from the meditation traditions of Buddhism, mindfulness, yoga, and the martial arts, the program has been successful. Richard Geller has taught since 1996, and Janine Marra since 2010.

Richard Geller/Janine Marra

The Bridgewater State Hospital Sangha brings together practitioners from Vipassana and Zen traditions. We share our practice with the residents of the prison/hospital. We meet weekly for meditation and study of traditional Buddhist texts.

Prisons Served: Bridgewater State Hospital/prison, Massachusetts.

Anna Klegon
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Buddhist Mentoring at MCI-Framingham, MA (women’s prison)

Pamela Colleran

We are a coalition of faith communities and individuals committed to helping reduce recidivism through the development and delivery of educational and personal growth programs in prisons. CPO strives to prepare inmates for returning to society as responsible and productive citizens.

We provide services primarily at MCI-Concord And Northeast Correctional Center, both in Concord, MA.

Carol Peters, Executive Director
Dharma Seed Prison Project

Dharma Seed Prison Project has catalogs, tapes and books of talks by Buddhist teachers for free for inmates requesting them. To start the process, the inmate needs to request a beginners or an advanced catalog which will be sent to them. Then they can select which CD’s they want and they will be mailed to them. Dharma Seed Prison Project is a part of Dharmaseed.org

Address: Dharmaseed, Box 1494, Greenfield, MA. 01301

 

Molly Chambers

We are a group of 7 women practicing weekly with the Sangha Sisters incarcerated at MCI Framingham. Our Dharma practice includes meditation, its application in daily life, studying Buddhist texts and regular Days of Mindfulness.

Anna Klegon

Produced the film “The Dhamma Brothers”

The story of the Dhamma Brothers of Donaldson Correctional Facility continues to unfold today as the Vipassana program establishes deep roots and manifests a gradual change from within the prison walls.

Jenny Phillips

Men’s circles to bring down the walls
The Jericho Circle Project is a non-profit 501 (c)(3) organization that brings men’s work to offenders and ex-offenders in institutional and community settings. Incorporated in 2002, the project introduces incarcerated men to the work of self-discovery and emotional growth through weekly and weekend circles. JCP volunteers have been facilitating men’s circles in county, state and federal correctional institutions since September, 2001. Currently, the project operates weekly circles in four correctional institutions in Massachusetts and has mentored the development of similar programs in Wisconsin and Texas. Hundreds of men have sat in weekly Jericho Circles since 2001 and 25 weekend intensive workshops have been held at federal and state correctional institutions. Through its programs of facilitator training and service learning, JCP has supported the expansion of volunteer services in correctional settings in Massachusetts and beyond.
What are Jericho Circles?
The project creates circles to help men become more aware of connections between what they feel, believe, say and do. As men involved with the criminal justice system see themselves more clearly, they develop a deeper understanding of how their personal pain and struggles have taken them off course and caused pain to others. Through guided group processes and training in emotional literacy and communication, men build the skills necessary to re-vision and reinvent interrupted and misguided lives. The project empowers offenders and former offenders by breaking down the walls that separate them from themselves and others. Once the walls begin coming down and the masks fall away, men can redirect their lives toward greater commitment, self-awareness, and responsibility. JCP assists men who have broken the law to face difficult truths about themselves so they can identify and pursue more productive directions in their lives.
Our Goals

The project seeks to develop a national network of facilitators and mentors, as well as standardized curricular materials and support services to assist offenders in federal, state and county institutions, and community settings. We focus on three broad target areas:

The organization and implementation of men’s circles in correctional institutions
The creation of intensive workshops (2-3 days) for incarcerated men
The preparation of men to pursue lives of integrity, connection and awareness in their relationships, families and  communities

Jericho circles offer practical techniques and experiential training to help men unlock the doors to their feelings, communicate clearly and become more whole.  The JCP approach is based on evidence-based practices that support the development of congruence between thinking, emotional states and actions in the world. The search for inner truth and life direction are the cornerstones of the work.  Through experience in Jericho Circles, men are encouraged to see themselves and others clearly, own their choices and take down the internal walls that stand in the way of living meaningful and responsible lives.

(617) 576-1066

The National Emotional Literacy Project for Prisoners, Lionheart’s first major and ongoing initiative, gives incarcerated men and women throughout the United States a mindfulness-based, research driven emotional literacy curriculum. The centerpiece of the program is the book Houses of Healing: A Prisoner’s Guide to Inner Power and Freedom  (130,000 copies in circulation). The program is enthusiastically embraced by corrections professionals, prison volunteers, and prisoners alike.

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