Women prisoners are providing beautiful handmade clothing to children in need thanks to a program being run out of Brisbane Women’s Correctional Centre (BWCC).
As part of a partnership between Queensland Corrective Services (QCS) and Uniforms 4 Kids, prisoners at BWCC have been repurposing law enforcement and emergency service uniforms into clothing for children in need.
The uniforms are donated by emergency services personnel and are then cut, modified and sewn into outfits including dresses, two piece suits, shorts, skirts and scrunchies.
General Manager Darryll Fleming said that the program gave the women an opportunity to give back to the community as well as teaching them key life and vocational skills, giving them a better chance at employment once released.
“International research tells us that these skills can reduce the women’s chances of reoffending when they leave our centers. It will also assist them with reintegrating back into society and give them skills which can assist in them finding employment which makes the community safer place,” Chief Superintendent Fleming said.
“We have seen an improvement in behavior, and the women have shown a real willingness to come to work and be part of a structured day while involved in the program which is fantastic.”
From the program’s inception in October to the second week of November, prisoners made more than 100 items of clothing.
These items were handed over to Uniforms 4 Kids Director Anne Macdonald APM on 18 November, and Ms Macdonald said everyone was impressed and proud with what the prisoners had achieved already.
“A big thank you to Brisbane Women’s Correctional Centre Industries Trade Instructors for making this happen and brightening the lives of those children in need. We look forward to our continued partnership,” Ms Macdonald said.