For the past three years, TFI volunteers have been teaching Bible studies and motivational classes at the local women’s prison, which holds about 240 inmates. When we started visiting them, most were downcast, unhappy, and full of anger and bitterness. Many of them have been charged with crimes but never tried, so their time in prison is open-ended and they are understandably quite worried and upset about their uncertain futures. One of our main objectives has been to help them find faith, hope, and strength from God.
Recently, we were invited by the Ministry of Justice to a seminar at the prison. This prison has been chosen as one of three prisons in the Philippines to work out a better system for integrating parolees back into society, and since the prison authorities have seen the good effect that our Bible studies and classes have had on the women, they asked us to be partners in this effort.
The program was initiated by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), and will focus on a sustained pre-reintegration referral system designed to help the women support themselves once out, thereby increasing their chances for staying out. We have already opened dialogue with the other governmental and non-governmental agencies that will participate, and we are all optimistic.
Originally Published in 2007.