The Story of See Us, Support Us
See Us, Support Us (SUSU) raises awareness about and increases support for children of incarcerated parents. Launched in 2015 by the Osborne Association’s New York Initiative for Children of Incarcerated Parents (NYCIP), SUSU began as a month-long effort to see and support children of incarcerated parents. SUSU is now a year-round effort with national partners, culminating in a month of action in October.
Despite the fact that one in 14 children experience parental incarceration, many remain unseen. This invisibility isolates and harms children and hinders service providers, educators, and communities from supporting them. Stigma, inaccurate stereotypes, and harmful narratives can further isolate children and families. SUSU aims to decrease stigma, build community, share supportive resources, and celebrate children who thrive and succeed when we SEE and SUPPORT them.
We encourage everyone to do the following:
participate in local and national events
join the SUSU network
hear from young people about how to support them and celebrate their creative talents
We encourage young people to follow SUSU to:
find community with others who have experienced parental incarceration
learn how to be an ally
use the SUSU social media guide to elevate the issue of parental incarceration among your networks
*Please share the SUSU Overview widely and encourage people to follow SUSU this October.*
SUSU annual themes:
2023 : Focus on a parent’s reentry, which can be joyous and challenging for children. We especially encourage those who work in the reentry field to follow SUSU month during October.
2022 : Supporting children’s physical health and emotional wellbeing. We especially encourage those who work in health and mental health settings to follow us during October.
2021: Supporting children’s educational success and wellbeing from early childhood through college. See Action Steps for Educators.
2020: Supporting children’s educational success and wellbeing from early childhood through college. See 5 Tips for Educators.
2019 : Importance of making visiting accessible and child-sensitive for both children of incarcerated parents and the incarcerated parent (s). See 5 Reasons to Support Visiting.
NYCIP, a special project of the Osborne Association's Center for Justice Across Generations, is a statewide partnership launched in 2006 of community and faith-based organizations, families with lived experience, and government agencies collaborating to envision a world that considers and safeguards children’s needs at every step of their parent’s involvement in the criminal legal system. We move closer to realizing this vision by centering the experiences of youth and families affected by parental incarceration and advocating for policies and practices that will turn the Children of Incarcerated Parents’ Bill of Rights into reality. Learn more about the SUSU national partners here.