Prior to March 12, 2020, Healing Broken Circles’ Community Center was bursting with energy, with hundreds of men transforming, growing, healing, and learning in 30+ programs—yoga, fatherhood, theater, mindfulness, financial wellness, Spanish, Convicted Lyrics, music, psychology, compassionate communication, among others. Importantly, doing so in a safe, supportive community where people can experience their dignity, value, agency, and capabilities.
Under COVID quarantine, those men are in their dorms and locks on their beds 23 hours a day, afraid and stressed. Without visits or programming, they are down to two meals a day, and with no opportunity to visit the store, they are in tight quarters running low on everything, including basics such as soap, deodorant and toothpaste, all the while holding back the fear that they are sitting ducks for COVID-19. The staff has also been hit hard by the virus. One has died. A good man. Tensions are high.
HBC is determined to do whatever we can for the population. We have been a steady, positive presence there for over a decade, and we have now pivoted to provide meaningful, purposeful, and spirit-lifting digital care packages—especially key, from people they know care about them.
Accessible to the whole population, our video content is mindful of the current tense, anxious, and highly restrictive conditions the men are living in, prioritizing our mindfulness, stress-reduction, arts, relationship skills, and financial mindsets programming, as well as humor and creativity.
Here’s a quick look at what we’re now calling HBC TV: We have been so blessed to receive many submissions from our large network of supporters and volunteers, including many fantastic poets here in Ohio who have shared messages with the men at Marion Correctional. See some examples below.