When four inmates at the Oregon State Correctional Institution (OSCI) approached Chaplain Kelly Raths about starting a victim empathy and insight development dialogue group, Raths reached out to members of the Department of Corrections Facilitated Dialogue Program for Severe and Violent Crime (FDP) to help launch the project. Morgan E. Moore is an FDP participant and CR student who has become one of the dialogue project developers.
Moore worked with Raths and OSCI inmates to map out a core curriculum; she also helped set up a practicum opportunity to involve fellow CR students and alumni in the project. The pilot dialogue program launched in January 2009, and focuses on three phases of dialogue, which Moore describes:
"Our first ten weeks educates the inmates on basic CR theories and practical knowledge. We ask the inmates to explore and take responsibility for the larger impact of their crime through dialogue with other inmates and facilitators.
The second ten weeks focuses on the offender's timeline and the concepts of trauma, grief, shame and guilt, values, and thinking errors and tools.
The third block, which we are still developing, attempts to apply the skills gained through role-plays, projects that provide the offender the opportunity to contribute back to the community, and examination of the depths of service they can provide and how it may help them in the future."
Moore says that other CR students are tracking the project’s success through surveys, and the group plans to publish its pilot project.
To learn about internship or volunteer opportunities with the OSCI dialogue program, contact Morgan E. Moore at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pictured (L-R): Pam Melick, CR grad student; Anna Gagnon; Rachel Foxhoven, CR alum; John Evans, CR alum; Maria Scaneli, CR alum; Michael Barrett, CR grad student; Morgan E. Moore, CR grad student.