I had to remember that the people who loved those who were incarcerated, were their children, their spouses, their parents, their siblings, their family members, and their friends. They loved them like we loved our family members. Ergo, the birth of Orange Grace.
How did I decide to publish the cards? Well, It has been said, art imitates life and life imitates art.
I saw an episode of Empire, where the plot centered around children not being allowed to visit their mom who was imprisoned and the heartache she felt, for not having those visits. This episode also showed scenes where children pressed their faces against a window to see their loved ones. Another scene, showed children standing in a room filled with guards. My heart was full.
My next television experience was a reality show star, taking her children to see their imprisoned dad and the drama that accompanied the process of that visit.
This was not a fictional story. This was a real life experience played out on television for all of us to see. The third factor that influenced my decision was the visit my daughter and I made to a facility to see an incarcerated friend.
We saw many children and loved ones waiting in the lobby. I started thinking about the loved one in prison/jail and how inconsequential this fact was to the children. All they wanted was an opportunity to see that loved one; mom, dad, or whomever. I could see the love and the hurt in their eyes. To see their faces, sent chills through my body.
My fourth and final decision came when I accompanied my daughter one Sunday to her yearlong volunteer service in the Atlanta Women’s Prison, as a requirement for the fulfillment of one of those three Masters’ degrees she earned (two from Emory University and one from Clark Atlanta University). I cried the entire time I was in the facility. I watched as she and others ministered the Word of God to incoming women to the prison system. I saw an outreach need. I saw broken spirits. I saw children and families left behind. I saw humanity at its worse but also at its best, as the Word of God was being administered. I SAW ORANGE GRACE.
I had to bite the proverbial bullet and remember we were all humans, with human frailties and human needs. I had to remember the inmates were once young and innocent, went to kindergarten, and played outside.
I remembered they once had dreams and aspirations. I remembered the tears of the children they left behind. Children who need to hold on to their hopes and dreams. Children who need to guard a small space in their hearts for mom, dad, loved one. Children who still need to dream of a future for themselves. Let’s remember the children.
Ergo, ©Orange Grace was born for the human side of the inhumane acts and atrocities loved ones had committed. These cards are for the children and loved ones to send to their LOVED ONE, without having their words censored. These cards say just enough to send a message quickly and consistently.
The cards say, we know you are there and we have not forgotten you. The cards address the more than 2.7 million children who have an incarcerated parent. This significant children, family, and friends collateral cannot be written off.
We know the stigma and shame is there. But love is also there. We want the children to have an easy way to say, I Love You, when a visit is not available. And for others, there may be a need to shut it down and move on!
©Orange Grace…Select your card. Show how much you care.
21 Amazing Cards to Choose From!
Thank you for using ©Orange Grace.
- WE MISS YOU. LOCKED UP DOES NOT MEAN NOT LOVED.
- WE ARE DOING THE BEST WE CAN. KNOW THAT
- YOU ARE IN OUR HEARTS. WE ARE IN YOUR HEART. GOD IS LOVE.
- WE ARE SO SORRY YOU DID THOSE THINGS. WE ARE HURTING, TOO.
- YOU MAY BE LOCKED UP BUT WE HAVE NOT LOCKED YOU OUT OF OUR HEARTS. WE SEND LOVE.
- DAD, I MISS YOU. I AM STRUGGLING WITH YOU NOT BEING HERE. I PROMISE TO STAY ON TRACK FOR ME AND FOR YOU. I WILL MAKE YOU PROUD.
- MOM, I MISS YOU. I AM STRUGGLING WITH YOU NOT BEING HERE. I PROMISE TO STAY ON TRACK FOR ME AND YOU. I WILL MAKE YOU PROUD.