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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 78214 Find in a Library
Title: Muenster Model of Marriage and Family Seminars for Prisoners and Their Families
Journal: Monatsschrift fuer Kriminologie und Strafrechtsreform  Volume:63  Issue:5  Dated:(October 1980)  Pages:277-289
Author(s): G Roloff
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 13
Format: Article
Language: German
Country: West Germany (Former)
Annotation: The Muenster model for special marriage and family seminars to aid inmates and their families is described.
Abstract: In general, experimental family seminars for West German inmates have only been available to assist a limited number of people, have been connected to church or social service organizations, and have focused on the central importance of the family for resocialization. The first Muenster seminars were held in 1976, 1977, and 1978 at the Catholic Social House in Muenster. The seminars consist of an initial meeting of 9 to 10 days with a 4-day followup meeting 3 to 7 months later. The program encompasses obligatory activities (i.e., group discussions and discussions with individual couples), elective sessions, and free time. The goal of the seminars is reactivation and preservation of family relationships. The seminars seek to analyze sources of conflict and communication problems. Principal methods employed are person-centered group discussion, client-centered discussion therapy, and therapy through open communication. The basic behavioral approach was developed by Kanfer; it examines what situational conditions and individual peculiarities precede problem behavior and what consequences occur with some degree of consistency. Emphasis is placed on cooperation of both marriage partners in solving problems. Leisure activities allow families to renew their contacts. The group process involves selection of a theme for a session, presentation and discussion of individual problems in the session, group members' expression of their reactions and solutions to the problem, and group evaluation of the session. Individual counseling sessions for couples consist of an introduction by the counselor, presentation of problems from the perspective of each partner, recommendations for solutions from partners and the counselor, and agreement on a plan of action. The seminars also provide counseling for child-rearing problems and group counseling sessions for children and adolescents. The seminar approach has proven flexible in application and educational to participants. However, a longer followup period is recommended. Notes and a bibliography of approximately 28 items are supplied.
Index Term(s): Families of inmates; Family counseling; Germany; Group therapy; Inmate marriages; Inmate Programs
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