Prison rehabilitation usually involves some combination of on-site work experience, and maybe some GED or college courses. But gardening? Dog training? Prairie restoration? Sounds like some social worker’s fantasy – right? Well, in some places, but in Washington State, the Sustainability in Prisons Program – a partnership with Evergreen State College – has over five years of success stories involving these specific activities. Not only are they giving inmates important life and job skills, but they’re also saving the system a lot of money.
In celebration of five years, the Washington State Department of Corrections released this video last Summer. It’s a little longer than most that we share here, but it’s a very inspiring twelve minutes. Take the time to watch, and then let us know what you think: a worthwhile use of prison resources and taxpayer dollars?
Image credit: screen capture from “Sustainability in Prisons” video