Beyond Violence mentors train to help others

Incarcerated women watch a training video
The trainees watched instructional videos featuring Stephanie Covington of Beyond Violence

The Beyond Violence program at California Institution for Women (CIW) hosted a special event recently featuring an expert in the needs of women involved in the criminal justice system. Nena Messina, President and CEO of Envisioning Justice Solutions Inc., came to CIW for the training of 12 incarcerated participants who will become peer facilitators in the Beyond Violence curriculum.

In the interactive training, participants shared personal stories and learned how much they relate to one another. The training gave extensive statistics about women convicted of violent offenses and their risk factors.

Stephanie Covington’s Beyond Violence is a successful, evidence-based program. Patricia Esparanza, a formerly incarcerated individual, assisted in the training. The 12 trainees learned about moving beyond anger and violence by finding the underlying issues of their behavioral patterns.-

The objective is that these individuals, after additional training, will facilitate group sessions and unlearn these behavioral patterns. One of the program goals is to provide an opportunity to learn new skills, including communication, conflict resolution, decision making, and mind-body techniques. CIW is looking forward to the revamp of a tried and true program.

By Lt. W. Newborg, California Institution for Women

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