Every December, Angel Tree Volunteers deliver Christmas gifts to children on behalf of their incarcerated parents. You never really know who is going to answer when you knock on a stranger’s door, but Angel Tree volunteers know to just roll with it and let God lead.
Ruby Payne couldn’t have expected what happened two days before last December’s Angel Tree® event. But together, they rose above the challenges to share hope and grace.
'I fell in love with [volunteering] right away, because there were people in there who needed me. A chance to make a difference—that's what I've been praying for my whole life.'
Celebrate the first Prison Fellowship Academy graduation with the men from cellblock 350B.
Standing up to "soft on crime" rhetoric, Virginia is working to improve the way we respond to crime in the Commonwealth.
"The church just really loved me and took care of me. They were there to help me and didn't hold anything back."
A little boy approached James Browning at an Angel Tree® party to ask if he too could have a gift. This child had tagged along with some friends, but unlike the other children, his parents were not incarcerated.
"We could not refuse him and gave him a gift," James says.
For one family, Angel Tree is a treasured—but sometimes heartbreaking—holiday tradition.
As the holidays approach, most children’s thoughts turn to gifts. As an adult, I am of course thinking about this Advent season, and the birth of Jesus. In all honesty, though, my thoughts are also turn to having our grown children home with us, what activities I should plan, holiday baking traditions, meal planning, how much can we fit in the course of a week?
For youth in Virginia’s juvenile justice system, incarceration has too often meant being held in large, overcrowded facilities far away from their families and support networks. This approach has led to high recidivism rates in the state, and a lack of hope for those stuck in a cycle of crime.