Find Her, Feel Her, Free Her!
by Pamela Thomas

 programs-in-prison  reentry

In 1979, a 12 year old girl named Pamela Thomas Began a journey which would lead her through all the extremes of poverty and the components associated with it.

She was one of those individuals who fell into the clutches of the Criminal Justice System. She has had a very challenging life, from childhood to adulthood. She comes from a single-family home, the second oldest of nine children, as well as the second mom to her siblings. Circumstances placed Ms. Thomas on the street at a very early age where she continued to raise herself. Along with surviving the streets as a child, she has also battled a very severe drug addiction, which she absolutely did not understand. She has spent much of her adult life battling one storm after another, including four prison incarcerations. Ms. Thomas has a very strong desire to make a difference in communities where women and children are affected by drugs, homelessness, hopelessness and incarceration. Her experiences through the penal system and many, many, programs (which were not adequate to her needs), left her hopeless, depressed, and alone. She had no resources and couldn’t find any. Many times she found herself back in the same situations. Many times she found herself mandated or placed in places where all the programming was male-structured. There was just nothing available in her community to a woman such as herself, who needed guidance, shelter, money and most of all self-esteem.

She decided to address the issue by developing a curriculum, which would be adequate to the needs of a woman such as herself. In doing several interviews with other women, researching communities, policies, along with her own life, she obtained the necessary information to reach her goal. In 2001, she completed a gender-based curriculum for formerly-incarcerated women, which she feels could possibly change the face of structural programming for women coming from challenging backgrounds/lifestyles. From her determination, hard work and creative mind came the birth of “Find Her, Feel Her, Free Her!

Ms. Thomas has not forgotten the hardships and challenges she went through to achieve what she has accomplished. She feels she is doing exactly what the stigmas, stereotyping and fears of society says she is incapable of doing.

In early 2003, Ms. Thomas collaborated with a very dedicated and established organization named Daisy’s Resource and Developmental Center. The Founder and CEO, Dr. Daisy M. Brooks, allowed Ms. Thomas an opportunity she’d long awaited. Together, they opened “Rose House”, a transitional Home for homeless/formerly incarcerated women and their children. Today “Find Her, Feel Her, Free Her, serves as the basis and format of “Rose House”. With Ms. Thomas as Administrative Director, her journey of helping other women is just beginning…

Margaret Mead: Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful individuals can change the world. It’s the only thing that ever has…

“A Rose is Still A Rose”
Overview Of Find Her, Feel Her, Free Her!

Ms. Pamela Thomas has taken her life and used it as a basis for the curriculum to hopefully promote growth, hope and stability in the lives of other women who’ve walked the path she has. The curriculum is unique in all aspects of the word because it was solely created, designed, and written by a formerly incarcerated woman. She has experienced and lived the difficulties and torment of abuse, drug addiction, parental termination, and numerous incarcerations, along with other challenges associated with the above. The curriculum is designed to target core / internal barriers which prevent the individual from living a life different from her present or previous lifestyle. It is realistic, and written in a language that she can understand and comprehend. There are no “fairytale” stories or ideas.

Ms. Thomas knows this curriculum is needed because there are too many programs that are male structured, and many target everything but what’s necessary to help the woman obtain desire or motivation to successfully overcome her challenges. She knows how difficult it is to try and reintegrate into a society which policies specifically tell you, you’re not a part of it. She wants to make a difference and through “Find Her, Feel Her, Free Her!”. She feels she has the opportunity to change the life of women and mothers who so many may have given up on. She feels she has the beginning of an answer to a national problem. She hopes to use her personal experiences and talent for writing, as a tool to help those who are so easily forgotten about.


  1. Gender Specific Services:
    Women from certain backgrounds / lifestyles have issues which they will not address, unless they are in a comfortable group setting (free of the male presence or stigma of society).
  2. Mental Health Services Distinctly Relating to Females of Challenging Backgrounds:
    There needs to be awareness of how certain services can have a great affect on how successful the woman will be pertaining to transitioning back into society. Many women have internal barriers/challenges, which are overlooked, which prohibit them from living a lifestyle different to their present or previous one. Unless these internal barriers are addressed, there will be no change.
  3. Group Counseling
    Substance abuse components, anger management that is designed for females, something they can relate to. Men and women deal with anger in a very, very, different way.
  4. Family Reunification
      - Needs to address parenting on a level of understanding with each individual female.
      - Needs to be realistic to her life and needs (forgiveness, acceptance).
      - Needs to address how to deal with separation from child as well as the possibility of parental termination.
      - Needs to extend services to women whose children have been adopted out.
      - Needs to address the challenging issue of another family member taking over the parenting role and not wanting to give that up- (should not solely be based on income)- (the other family member also has a fear of the mother relapsing or going back to prison).

Goals & Objectives of Find Her, Feel Her, Free Her!

The objective of this curriculum is, to meet the necessary transitional needs (internal), of a forgotten and misunderstood population, who make up a large portion of the low-income communities in the United States.

  1. Better preparing formerly incarcerated women of low-income communities for self-awareness and the interpersonal challenges of society, home, and the workplace.
  2. Allow the participant to separate the stereotypes and stigma society falsely relates to formerly incarcerated women.
  3. Initiate a certifiable and productive class for female participants.
  4. Help promote character, confidence and a desire to change.
  5. To help lay a foundation for becoming a successful and productive member of society.

This manual will introduce participant to concepts of change. In each section, she will find tools and suggestions which focus on avenues for developing a foundation for mental stability, stamina, and self-love. This manual was created by a formerly incarcerated female whose had first-hand experience of the lifestyle, challenges and barriers women face before, during and after incarceration. The situations introduced are realistic and written in a way the participants will be able to comprehend and relate to. Each chapter targets a specific area of concern associated with the re-entry process. It is designed to promote a sense of desire for change and also, a curiosity of the change process.

Costs/Fees of Find Her, Feel Her, Free Her!

  • Program certification is required for use of curriculum and ordering workbooks.
  • Fees/Cost Total
  • Facilitation $30.00 per hour
  • Workbooks (to be ordered in multiples of 10) 10@$30.00 ea.
  • Preparation Time (per 10 participants) $200.00 (includes class materials)
  • Class Length:
  • (specific sessions) 30 hour training
  • (full training) 60 hour training


Classes can be modified to carry more than 10 participants. The curriculum is designed to be flexible. Contact: Pamela Thomas 847-672-9171 Also Available: “What About Me?” is the newly developed youth version of “Find Her, Feel Her, Free Her!”