Norman's cover image
Norman

Norman Reed

Year of Award: 2014 Award State: Tasmania Social Welfare > General
To create the role of prison based Family Support Workers in Risdon Prison and recruit/develop a team of workers - Singapore, UK, Belgium, Switzerland, France
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Norm is the Pastor of the Christian Family Centre, a church close to Tasmania’s Risdon prison. Since moving to Hobart about six years ago Norm has been passionate about getting into gaol. And since ‘breaking-in’ he’s been determined to champion the cause of the children and families of prisoners, who are often the hidden victims in the criminal justice system.

Norm is married with three grown children and was fortunate to be able to coordinate his Churchill Fellowship trip so that he and his wife could be in Switzerland for the birth of their first granddaughter.

His trip through Singapore, France, Belgium, Switzerland, England, Wales and Scotland allowed him to visit 21 prisons and view the work being done to help children and families of prisoners to maintain and/or develop healthy family relationships with their incarcerated family members. The main focus of Norm’s trip was to view the role of the family engagement workers operating in England and Wales, with a view to creating a similar model in Tasmania.

Since completing his Fellowship Norm has been able to create the family engagement worker model in Risdon Prison and adapt a number of good practices gleaned from his trip; the homework program, with children linking to their incarcerated parents by video, has attracted international attention.

In October Norm was invited by the Tasmanian Prison Service to present at the 2015 International Prisons and Corrections Association (IPCA)

Conference on his work in the prison; he was also privileged to report at the Australasian Corrections Education Association (ACEA) conference in November 2015.

Norm continues to provide a range of family support programs in the prison, and in December last year was able to coordinate the involvement of the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra to perform Peter and the Wolf as part of a special family day for prisoners and their children.

On 17 November 2015 Norm’s work in the prison was recognised in the Tasmanian State Parliament with Dr Vanessa Goodwin, the Minister for Prisons and Attorney General, concluding her comments: ‘I commend and congratulate Norm Reed and the Tasmania Prison Service staff on this initiative, the Dads and Homework program, and also all the other work they are doing supporting the children of prisoners.’ 

Excerpt from “Bringing Knowledge Home” published by the Churchill Fellows Association of Tasmania (2016) 

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