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Few art programs for incarcerated juveniles exist; however, results of assessments indicate decreased recidivism and behavior problems for those involved in such programs. This paper reports on a preliminary study, part of a long term study based on the concept of restorative justice, of an ongoing art program for incarcerated adolescents with community exhibits and sale of their work, with proceeds to a youth-oriented foundation. The Voices from Inside project, a partnership between Franklin University and the Ohio Department of Youth Services, has sponsored two exhibits, in 2012 and 2013, with the third planned for fall 2014. From 18 youths’ art contributions in 2012, for the 2014 exhibit 100 pieces are projected. At the 2013 exhibit, two quantitative instruments were administered to the youth and community attendees.

Results of the youth survey (response rate 47%, 16 of 34 exhibitors), showed that 81% cited as benefits the ability to cooperate with others, ability to complete a task, and increased self-esteem from public recognition and sale of their art.

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Prison Education and Reentry

Voices From Inside: Preliminary Results of a Transformational Justice Art Program for Incarcerated Youth