Newsletter – August 2019

Back in Style for School

It’s almost time for kids to head to school…

We’re still collecting items for our 8th annual Back in Style fundraiser on Thursday, Aug. 22. The event will help 300 kids with incarcerated loved ones prepare for the new school year by providing free school supplies, meals and haircuts.

Back in Style donations wish list 
Deadline for supply drop-off/delivery is 5 p.m. Friday, Aug. 16. You can also order supplies online and have them shipped directly to our administrative office.

RSVP for Back in Style event

Also, we’re still looking for local hairstylists and barbers to provide simple hairstyles or haircuts at the event. It’s a great way to give back to the community and get the word out about your business. Last year, volunteer barbers and stylists gave 103 free haircuts and styles! To sign up, contact Ciara Thompson at or 704-494-8601, ext. 14.

Listen now: CCT’s Kevin Walsh and Ciara Thompson sat down with journalist and radio personality Francene Marie recently to talk about our Back In Style event.

Elevation Church shows CCT some love!

Elevation Church shows CCT some love!

Center for Community Transitions staff and families were all smiles, joy and laughter July 27 – Aug. 3 during Elevation Church’s Love Week. The annual event centers on community outreach and making a positive difference through service projects.

Church members, CCT staff and Center for Women residents painted the totem poles that decorate the lawn outside the Center for Women, as well as spruced up facility’s salon. On Family Day, kids got to cool off on a bouncy water slide, while the adults sat and chatted with their loved ones. A few residents even took a turn on the slide. “Some of them never tried one before. They had a ball and the smiles and laughter were priceless,” said Delilah Montalvo, program manager.

The smiles continued when Elevation Church presented us with a $10,000 donation to further our mission of helping people with criminal records and their families find healthier and more productive ways of living. Thank you Elevation Church! We are truly thankful for your support and generosity.

Client spotlight from Families Doing Time team

Client spotlight from Families Doing Time team*Liz has lived with family the last 5 years under difficult circumstances: her husband and the father of her children is incarcerated. This year, she was ready to venture on her own – despite lack of support from immediate family members – because she knew it would be a better environment for her 4th and 5th grade children. Liz, a cancer survivor, worked with her Families Doing Time program assistant to get into Charlotte Family Housing.

She’s is a good mom and hard worker and just needed a friendly hand and some encouragement to achieve what she never thought possible: her own apartment. She entered the FDT program in December and by April she was in her own place. Liz’s FDT program assistant worked with her throughout the process, coached her on budgeting, worked through logistics and explained to her the many resources available to her. Meanwhile, the FDT team worked with her children at school to help them sort out emotions and express feelings in a positive way.

Liz recently received some furniture from Beds For Kids, one of our many partner agencies. Not only has her self-esteem improved considerably, her children are now hopeful about the future. Liz’s hard work, dedication, focus and love can be felt in her new home. The relationship with members of her immediate family have improved and so has her health. Liz is a great example of how FDT helps family members of incarcerated individuals with so many aspects of their lives.

*not her real name

Staff and board on the move at CCT

We’re thrilled to welcome new CCT team members who hold a tremendous amount of experience and knowledge in their fields. Veteran Chanell Cato is the Center for Women’s new trust fund/work release program assistant, bringing with her many years of experience working with the women’s population. Annetta Mitchell was a CCT intern who graduated in May and decided to join our team the part-time program assistant for Families Doing Time. Dawn Mitchell brings 10 years of case management experience to the Center for Women.

A fond farewell to Erik Ortega, Lifeworks! program director for 13 years, and Charis Blackmon, who was with CCT for 8 years and most recently our Families Doing Time program director. Erik is now senior social services program manager for Unified Workforce Development at Mecklenburg County, Consolidated Health and Human Services. Charis is executive director of the West Side Land Trust. We thank them for their years of dedication to CCT and wish them both continued success! 

A warm welcome also goes to our newest Board of Directors member, Christopher Braswell, president of B2 Talent Solutions. He has over 20 years’ experience partnering with organizations in talent management, executive search and leadership development. We’re honored to have him on our team!

We’re grateful to retiring board members Jon EideLesley Quick and Blaine Sanders for the time and talent they brought to our organization through their volunteer service. Jon served on the board for 6 years, most recently as Treasurer. He moved to Durham to be the chief operating officer at Echo Health Ventures, and we wish him well. Thank you also to 3-year board member Lesley Quick of Duke Energy. Finally, a big thank you to Blaine Sanders, an attorney with Robinson Bradshaw and Hinson, who was a CCT Board member, off and on, for 30 years!

Save the date: Education Tea Fundraiser, Sept. 15

Save the date: Education Tea Fundraiser, Sept. 15

Join us on Sunday, Sept. 15 from 3-4:30 p.m. for tea, cookies, cakes and conversation at our 5th annual Education Tea Fundraiser. The event will be held at the Center for Women located next to our administrative offices (5825 Old Concord Rd.)

All proceeds will go into our Education Fund, which supports higher education opportunities for residents living at CCT’s Center for Women. Anyone interested in hearing more about our Center for Women and would like to support our Education Fund is invited to attend. The event is free but attendees will be asked to make a donation. RSVP to by Sept. 9. Can’t make it? You can still support CCT by making an online donation. Type ‘education fund’  in your note.

Thank you to the individuals, companies, foundations and churches that recently made donations or grants to CCT.

Families Doing Time staffersFamilies Doing Time staffers represented the East and West sides of town Aug. 6 at National Night Out, getting the word out about our agency and services we provide. Traletta Banks and Ilona Alvarez were at the Hidden Valley Community Association, while Ciara Thompson and Annetta Mitchell were at Arbor Glen Outreach Center. Night Out is an annual community-building event that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie.

Posted in