Inmates Get Father-Daughter Dance in Prison
Nine-year-old Shauneya got the finishing touches for a special day where she went to a dance with her father.
"She's been preparing for this for weeks," said her mom.
Shauneya joins an excited group of young princesses as their moms take a few photos, but these little girls did not go to a school dance.
They went to the city jail in Richmond, Virginia where their fathers are inmates. They're all serving sentences for non-violent crimes, like drug possession.
They traded in their prison uniforms for suits and ties. Normally, the jail is a very scary place, but not that day.
Sheriff C.T. Woody escorted the little angels to meet their dads. When they met, it was hugs and kisses. They even pin on corsages, and escort their girls down a red carpet.
Then it was time to dance, and the dads lovingly held their little girls close. The room was filled with tender father daughter dances.
The idea came from the girls themselves, said Angela Patton, founder of Camp Diva, which sponsored the event.
"The girls saw the need to have their fathers in their lives," she said.
The dance gave the men a chance to see the love they are missing on the outside, learn from their mistakes, and foster a nurturing bond with their daughters.
When the day was done, there were plenty of tears. As the Luther Vandross song says, they all wish they could dance with their fathers again, forever.