(CBS) — Forty activists and family members gathered Saturday outside the Cook County Jail to try to wish a Happy Mother’s Day to women who are incarcerated. Children drew posters and released Mother’s Day balloons. They had flowers for families coming out, and toiletries for those going in to give inmates.

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Monica Cosby was among the most passionate of those who participated. She was released in December after 20 years in prison, including 17 years downstate – during which she received one visit from a family member.

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“I want to remind them that they haven’t been forgotten, that they are loved and to not give up,” she said.

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Cosby wants state funding for bus trips that would allow family members from Chicago to see women imprisoned at Logan and Decatur more often, and more pre-release education to help prepare inmates to re-integrate into society.