From a Jailer…
I am writing this letter to let you know what a difference Kentucky Jail Ministries has made in my facility.
Kentucky Jail Ministries has developed a Life Skills program to aid individuals in their reentry into society. These individuals might not get this instruction while on the street. They develop skills needed to be successful in every day life such as writing checks and taking care of a bank account to creating a resume for a job position.
Kentucky Jail Ministries has not only become a benefit to incarcerated persons but to my staff as well. The inmates look forward to participating in services and seem to genuinely believe in the benefits of religion and religious beliefs. Inmates have changed their attitudes and hope to become productive, law-abiding citizens upon their release.
This change in their attitude has also helped my staff with their daily job duties. So many times inmates believe they can release their frustrations by being disobedient and disorderly within the cell. Kentucky Jail Ministries has not only decreased disobedience among inmates but has created a sense of “self” that also encourages others to seek the same encouragement.
From a Chief Deputy…
The Kentucky Jail Ministries is a large organization of committed professionals from the faith-based community. Here in [omitted for privacy] County, they have always answered the call when we needed them to fulfill a prisoner’s needs; be it counseling, uplifting faith services, and music, as a guide to prayer, or as a classroom instructor.
I am a 22 year Corrections Professional and have seen many different faith-based groups come into a jail for services. None of these groups, in my opinion, can equal the positive impact that the Kentucky Jail Ministries has on our prisoner population -but the most remarkable characteristic of this ministry is the fact that they come to the jail to work, they have a mission and are very organized going about it; whether it be counseling drug addicted young offenders with many still in their teens, to pregnant female inmates experiencing the darkest hours of their lives, to accepting ex-offenders and their families into the bosom of their congregation this is a ministry that is focused on easing the transition form convict to citizen as these men and women emerge from the shadow of incarceration and back into the light of normal life, Kentucky Jail Ministries is there for them.
Another unique aspect of this Ministry is that they also keep an eye on the well being of our Jail Deputies, they have time to spare to talk with these young officers, many of whom have difficulty from time to time understanding the pressure and stress of everyday duty inside a County Jail. Many time I have had a call or visit from one of the Ministers wanting to let us know about one of our staff members that they are concerned about. I want to underscore the uniqueness of this fact of the Ministry, not in 20 years of service have I known another Faith-Based Organization to care about and become involved in our deputies well being, but Kentucky Jail Ministries does not flinch from this need.
My final comments are this. In 2004 we here in [omitted for privacy] County were experiencing some of the worst overcrowding at the jail…We needed a program that gave the inmates a decent shot at making it on the “outside”, but with jail being a temporary detention with an extremely tight budget we just couldn’t allocate the funding for such a program. Enter the Kentucky Jail Ministries, after we explained what our thoughts were on a “Life Skills” course for our inmates they took the ball and ran with it. Soon the Kentucky Jail Ministries Life Skills program was being taught to our Class D felons prior to their parole and release. An outstanding 12 week program that taught such essential skills as how to manage daycare for their children, start a checking and saving account and how to keep it balanced, basic writing writing skills, job interview skills; what to wear, cover the tattoos, posture and decorum during an interview were all taught to the prisoner by the Kentucky Jail Ministries and much more where space does not allow me to list them.
With Kentucky Jail Ministries in your facility, if you reach out to them with a need – you will get that helping hand from this group of Christians, and they ask for so very little or nothing in return for their time effort and expertise.
From a Jailer…
I want to take this opportunity to thank you for the ministry services that you provide our facility. As Jailer, I am required by law to provide the constitutional care to all inmates and my belief is spiritual needs are a vital part of inmate care.
The Life Skills program offers offenders the opportunity to address some of their personal issues as well as teaching them how to be successful, productive citizens of society. In this day and age, with the economic shortfall in our country, if we don’t minister, encourage, and educate our offenders then the chance of success is very low. Too many times these individuals have been labeled outcasts of society and told they are failures, “no good” and will never change. We know that through Jesus Christ change is possible and time and time again the Kentucky Jail Ministries have given hope to offenders and we have seen lives change.
I want to encourage local churches to look at what the Kentucky Jail Ministries is all about and to pray and consider financially supporting this ministry. It is my privilege to endorse the Kentucky Jail Ministries and I want to thank you once again for the faith-based programs that you provide our facility. May God bless you and keep you safe in His love.