Otago Corrections Facility (OCF) today held a small ceremony to acknowledge the hard work of prison volunteers who freely give their time and expertise to offer prisoners constructive activities.
“The Volunteer Recognition Awards are held annually in association with International Volunteer Day and it is our chance to thank all our wonderful volunteers for their positive contribution to the work of the Prison,” says acting Prison Manager Jack Harrison.
“The existence of a diverse and energetic pool of volunteers brings a community perspective to our services and contributes towards helping offenders positively return to the community.
“While we’re thankful for the work of every volunteer, there are some groups and individuals whose effort and dedication really stand out. Today has been a chance to give them the recognition they deserve.
“Our individual volunteer award winner, Paul Reet, works fulltime but every Saturday, rail, hail or shine he comes to the Prison providing a free counselling service to the prisoners. Paul is very well respected and without his excellent work the positive changes in the prisoners would not be so evident.
“Many members of the Henley Church spend many hours a week at OCF helping with services and bible study groups. They have been extremely generous with their time and experience and are hugely deserving of the group award.”
Mr Harrison says Corrections is committed to developing and maintaining a strong and progressive volunteer policy to achieve the Department’s goal of reducing reoffending through the rehabilitation and reintegration of prisoners.
“By providing a varied array of constructive activities, volunteers can help prisoners by supporting literacy, numeracy and other educational programmes; by teaching life or employment skills for reintegration back into the community on release from prison; or by offering opportunities for prisoners to develop a sense of self-worth and to turn their life around.”
Corrections is always looking for new volunteers who can bring constructive activities into prisons. If you know someone who may be able to help, they can email email@example.com or phone (04) 495 8428 for more information.
For further information contact the Communications Services Desk:
Phone: (04) 460 3365
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