|Picture take by C. Gautreaux|
Through metal detectors, security, sign in and officer escorts through numerous locked gates we make our way onto the women's unit Tuesday mornings at the Pre-trial detention center in Downtown Atlanta. At the officer's station we announce who we are and what we are doing: "We're here with the Public Defender's Office S.E.E.D.S. program to do InterPlay."
Women who were in jail last week join us and the newly incarcerated sometimes hang back to see what is happening and what we are up too - until the music starts. We start the music in the warm up and it draws them in. You see it's the only music some of them have heard since they were locked up. On this unit they are not allowed personal devices or music to be played out loud. The women are here because they cannot afford bail and they have been detained for traffic violations, public intoxication or other offenses. The music draws them in and they stay for the connection and fun. We've heard noticings of feelings including, "felt like freedom," "joy for the first time since I've been here," and "Peace," Space is created for these women to be their authentic whole selves - sometimes we laugh, sometimes we cry and we always connect with the dignity and worth of every human being.
InterPlay and your support of InterPlay helps make this work possible in our community and we are grateful as leaders and community members.
Give InterPlay Day is April 7th & you can click here to help us continue this work: