Food For The Poor Hailed for Work in the Prison System

Photo: Rudranath Fraser State Minister for National Security, Senator the Hon. Pearnel Charles Jr., addresses the recent ground-breaking ceremony for a new training facility at the Tamarind Farm Adult Correctional Centre in St. Catherine, which is being built by Food For The Poor at a cost of approximately $3.19 million.

Story Highlights

  • State Minister for National Security, Senator the Hon. Pearnel Charles Jr., has praised Food For The Poor (FFP for its work in the prison system.
  • He cited, among other things, the Prison Ministry Programme, which attends to the spiritual needs of inmates.
  • “It is to your credit that for over three decades you have worked tirelessly in this regard. When others have only spoken about it, you have been there actually serving the people of Jamaica. You have filled a very critical gap and you continue to demonstrate that relevance in a tangible way,” Senator Charles said.

State Minister for National Security, Senator the Hon. Pearnel Charles Jr., has praised Food For The Poor (FFP for its work in the prison system.

He noted that the charity organisation, which supports the Ministry’s delivery of programmes and services in correctional institutions, has a long and distinguished track record in safeguarding the welfare of persons regarded by sections of the society as “unredeemable”.

He cited, among other things, the Prison Ministry Programme, which attends to the spiritual needs of inmates.

“It is to your credit that for over three decades you have worked tirelessly in this regard. When others have only spoken about it, you have been there actually serving the people of Jamaica. You have filled a very critical gap and you continue to demonstrate that relevance in a tangible way,” Senator Charles said.

He noted that FFP is one of the Ministry’s most consistent and productive partners, adding that “I believe that our partnership is a model collaboration for emulation in Jamaica and the Caribbean region”.

He was speaking at the recent ground-breaking ceremony for a new $3.19-million training facility at the Tamarind Farm Adult Correctional Centre in St. Catherine, which is being built by FFP.

The facility, which will deliver the Department of Correctional Services’ (DCS) educational and vocational programme for inmates, will comprise three classrooms, an office, sanitation facilities, among other features, and will be outfitted with desks and chairs for instructors and students.

FFP will also renovate the institution’s computer room as part of the 10-week project.

The initiative, which is being done under the Prison Ministry Programme, will benefit more than 200 inmates.

Senator Charles said through the project, not only will the inmates at Tamarind Farm be provided with a learning facility, but opportunities for empowerment as well.

“We are going to offer them a new beginning so that the engagements of the Department of Correctional Services will not be seen as simply the end… but as the end of one phase of their lives and the beginning of the new, enhanced and empowered phase of their lives, where our inmates will become positive contributors to the society,” he pointed out.

“Because of your caring approach and partnership, you have created the life-changing opportunities that are going to allow the men here at Tamarind Farm to get more opportunities to reach their maximum potential. You are giving them that second chance that they deserve,” the State Minister added.

In his remarks, FFP Executive Director, David Mair, said the organisation is guided by the belief that “lives of remorse and regret can be turned into lives of purpose and new beginning” through the appropriate interventions.

In this regard, he said the entity is committed to working with incarcerated persons “because we expect released inmates to become law-abiding and contributing members of our communities”.

Commissioner of Corrections, Ina Hunter, in expressing gratitude for the FFP’s longstanding support, indicated that the entity “exemplified what it is to look beyond the faults of those we serve and look at their needs”.

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