I am delighted to be collaborating with Kim Cano, author of the highly acclaimed book, “On The Inside” to form the One In One Project.
“On The Inside” is based on a true story about a middle-aged woman who is sentenced to seventeen years in prison after committing a white-collar crime. Her family abandon her and without the support of her husband and two sons, finds herself alone inside the penal system. As her sentence wears on, Kristen learns about life in prison, the people she shares a common home with, and most importantly, herself.
The character Kristen is based on Kim’s real life sister-in-law. Kristen and I share many things in common. We have both experienced the criminal justice system as mature women charged with a white-collar crime, and we have both had to come to terms with how society treats women like us, women who have served their time and still carry the stigma of their sentence.
Yet, whilst Kristen served her sentence in prison, I did not. I was given a suspended sentence, which I served in the community. And Kristen saw the way the American penal system operated, whilst I experienced the British criminal justice system. One in, one out.
Together, Kristen and I hope to highlight the differences in each system due to our own experiences and to help raise awareness of how women who commit crimes are treated by society and media representation at large.
Kristen & I have started a pen-pal relationship across a vast ocean. Between us, we aim to form friendships between women in prison in the US and the SHE community women. Many SHE women have served short-term prison sentences and lost everything. Under SHE’S umbrella, with support, SHE’S women will divulge their lives post-prison release and how they are building brighter futures. Kristen and the US women will contribute their experiences of their lives while serving their sentences and the women will draw support from each other. Many of these women are leading busy and peer mentoring other women in prison. Friendships are forming and women from two countries are drawing on support from each other.
Kim Cano, the author of the book and I met on Twitter after I spotted the book. With Kim’s support and allowing us to use her book, based on her family’s experiences and Kristen’s, the One in One Out Project will be the foundation of friendships formed under difficult circumstances. It is my greatest pleasure that Kim Cano has agreed to me using her fantastic book to facilitate this.
The Project welcomes any woman who would like to write to women in the US, serving prison sentences.
So, please watch this space!