The New York State Literary Center, The Communication Project, Arts in Education
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Rebuilding Families

Incarceration has significant and long lasting impacts on families. Rochester parents serving sentences of one year or under at Monroe Correctional Facility do not suffer the consequences alone; the children of incarcerated parents often lose contact with their parents and many times visits are rare. Children of incarcerated parents are more likely to drop out of school, engage in delinquent behavior, and subsequently be incarcerated themselves. 

In 2014, the New York State Literary Center, in partnership with the Office of The Sheriff and the Rochester Broadway Theater League, piloted “Rebuilding Families” to rebuild and reaffirm the family for incarcerated parents and to reduce the impact of incarceration for their children through a program designed to connect newly released inmates with their families through attendance at a Broadway musical. The project was designed to build upon the New York State Literary Center’s knowledge and experience with arts integrated learning programming and the Rochester Broadway Theater League’s commitment to community engagement.

Rebuilding Families supports parent / child relationships through arts based projects that encourage good parenting as well as bonding with children and to enhance reentry by developing a means for incarcerated parents to reunite with their children.

In 2105, the “Rebuilding Families” partnership built upon the success of the Pilot Program and received funding for the partnership, through the Rochester Broadway Theater League, from The Broadway League in a rigorous national competition, the first funding ever awarded to a project that involved those incarcerated.

This is the third year of the successful “Rebuilding Families” partnership.

Incarcerated Education





Mission Statement


The New York State Literary Center (NYSLC) -- a Rochester, New York area arts education organization -- provides transformative project based learning experiences that foster literacy development, community belonging, collaboration, and dialogue, for those incarcerated.  






Food For Thought, a Newsletter Written by Inmates at Monroe Correctional Facility. 
Click here to read


Interview with Dale Davis, Founder and Executive Director, The New York State Literary Center

Click Here




Have you ever had a dream so big you don’t think you will ever get to it.  I do. I try to survive even if my dreams never come true. I try to live my life. I try to do it right.

It is hard when there is no light.

Can I survive if my dreams don’t come true.

I am trying to live my life, trying to do it right

It is hard.


©2016 New York State Literary Center


The New York State Literary Center
is made possible by the New York State
Council on the Arts with the support of
Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New
York State Legislature.