“If prisons are to protect society from criminals, then they must become places where the incarcerated are encouraged to believe in their inherent value as human beings.” Governor-General Sir Patrick Allen made the statement when he addressed the Prison Fellowship Jamaica Fundraising Banquet at the Terra Nova Hotel last evening.
Sir Patrick said that there is no doubt that education, skills training, programmes involving mental health and drug abuse can reduce the rate of recidivism. This he said is no secret to the Correctional Services which, in spite of limited resources, has been making ends meets with the limited resources at their disposal.
“They long to be able to roll out the full gamut of programmes which would better prepare inmates for re-integration into society. They need to be enabled to offer improved programmes so that more inmates might leave with certified skills and enhanced self-discipline to improve their chances of gainful, decent employment,” said The Governor-General.
He said that he is pleased that the Prison Fellowship ministry does not overlook the staff members at the correctional institutions. “It is good that from time to time, as resources permit, the PFJ also renders assistance to them and I hope that sustainable programmes in this regard can be adequately sponsored,” said Sir Patrick.
Prison Fellowship, through its outreach ministries, continues to make a huge difference in the lives of the incarcerated. Sir Patrick said that it “proves the immense value which you are to our nation. You who serve in this ministry are blessed as you shine the light of Christ in the darkness of troubled lives. Thank you for allowing us the privilege of supporting you through our time, talent or treasure.”