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Rick Scott, Governor
Florida Department of Corrections, Secretary Julie L. Jones

Florida Department of Corrections
Julie L. Jones, Secretary

Media Advisory
July 8, 2013
For More Information
Contact: Communications
(850) 488-0420
Misty Cash
(850) 661-6562 Cell

Florida Department of Corrections Announces Partnership with Sesame Street around Little Children, Big Challenges: Incarceration
~ Polk Correctional Institution will host the launch event to help the 64,475 children of Florida inmates. ~

POLK CITY, Fla. - The Florida Department of Corrections will announce a partnership with Sesame Street around Little Children, Big Challenges: Incarceration, a new resource for children and their families to help them cope with the reality of incarceration.

Florida is one of 10 pilot states launching the resource and partnering with Sesame Street. The total number of minor children reported by Florida inmates is 64,475.


WHAT: Department of Corrections and Sesame Street launch Little Children, Big Challenges: Incarceration

Sesame Street walk around character “Rosita” will be in attendance to entertain children and families.
WHEN: Saturday, July 13, 2013 at 10:30 a.m.
WHERE: Polk Correctional Institution
10800 Evans Road
Polk City, Florida 33868

RSVP: If you wish to attend the press conference, you must contact the Department of Corrections’ Office of Communications at (850) 488-0420 prior to the event on Saturday to submit a Media Access Form, as background checks will need to be completed. All members of the media need to bring a photo ID.

No video or photos may be taken without the prior consent and approval from Department staff at the event. No cell phones will be permitted inside the institution.
WHY: The number of children with an incarcerated parent has increased nearly 80% in the past 20 years. Nearly 2.7 million children have a parent in state or federal prison, 64,475 in Florida, yet few resources exist to support young children and families with this life-changing circumstance.
Sesame Workshop is working closely with advisors and partners in the pilot states to distribute and integrate Little Children, Big Challenges: Incarceration resources into correctional facilities and organizations that specialize in early childhood education, mental health and counseling, parenting programs, foster care, and organizations that have missions specific to helping families cope with the incarceration of a loved one. 
The partnership between the Department and Sesame Street Workshop is a collaboration that will allow for the dissemination of these much needed resources in Florida institutions for incarcerated family members, children, caregivers and loved ones.

Little Children, Big Challenges: Incarceration is designed to:
  • support, comfort, and reduce anxiety, sadness, and confusion that young children may experience during the incarceration of a parent;
  • provide at-home caregivers with strategies, tips, and age-appropriate language they can use to help communicate with their children about incarceration; and
  • inform incarcerated parents themselves that they can parent from anywhere, and provide them with simple parenting tips highlighting the importance of communication.
Upon the launch, the Department will host a resource page on our web site with a variety of resources and materials. You can catch a preview of it at


As Florida's largest state agency, the Department of Corrections employs more than 25,000 members statewide, oversees more than 100,000 inmates and supervises nearly 120,000 offenders in the community.

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