Emotional growth is an essential pillar of CPO’s mission of Education, Connection, and Transformation. It is essential to the life trajectories of the people in prison, and to society as a whole, to develop strategies for managing emotions and behavior, and to break patterns that have roots in the past, and that may lead to reoffending. New volunteers in socio-emotional programs may start as observers, providing leaders with general and practical support, and have roles that grow over time. CPO is committed to providing socio-emotional programming that is grounded in research, and that has roots in spirituality, but with a nondenominational and respectful approach.

“I learned … that it’s okay to look and talk about our scars, holding them in our hearts as trophies, not a weight to hold us down. A scar can serve as a reminder and also a receipt that you have paid that price but you still are here and can make a difference. “

— Mindfulness Student

Restorative Justice
This course was designed for incarcerated people interested in taking responsibility for the harm they committed, making amends to their families, victims, and communities, and finding the path to their own inner healing. The length of the course is a reflection of the deep group work required on the journey from self-exploration to empathy for others. Participants begin with identifying the trauma in their own lives that may have led to unhealthy decisions and then move toward taking responsibility for the harm they committed.

Meditation/Healthy Living
Meditation is a practice in which an individual uses a technique – such as breathing, concentration, or focusing the mind on a particular object, thought, or activity – to train attention and awareness and achieve a mentally clear, emotionally calm, and stable state. Meditation is one deliberate means of changing the course of one’s thought process, and in turn, altering how one perceives and responds to the environments around them. Meditation can increase self-awareness, improve emotional well-being, stress management, immunity, foster greater empathy for others, lower blood pressure, reduce anxiety, reduce sleep disorders and high blood pressure, decrease pain, ease symptoms of depression, and improve sleep patterns.

Mindfulness & Yoga
This class incorporates yoga postures, gentle movement sequences, breath work, structured silent meditation, and guided relaxation to support awareness and mindfulness of the breath and body, and quieting of the nervous system. These skills are helpful in emotional regulation and responsible decision-making. This class is a gentle joint practice, so there is no weight bearing through the knees or wrists. Chairs are available.

Path of Freedom – Transform Lives Through Meditation

Path of Freedom is a Mindfulness-Based Emotional Intelligence (MBEI) course written by Fleet Maul and Kate Crisp. This course touches on mindfulness meditation, emotional awareness, communication, conflict resolution, and various resourcing and resiliency-building skills. The program intends to help participants develop greater self-awareness, improved impulse-control, and greater social awareness to offer a new positive vision for their lives.

Goal Setting: This eight-week session integrates self-learning strategies and personal goal-setting practices to foster skills and methods to build awareness for effective decision-making. Throughout this process, participants will be provided with self-reflection tools, self-management tools, and techniques to build awareness and practice daily self-evaluation skills.

Other CPO Programs to Explore

Make A Difference Today

Through time, or donation, you can make the difference in an individuals life and future both inside and outside of prison walls.