People from all walks of life can be good volunteers. We need level-headed people who are willing to share their faith, training and experience with inmates. Below is a list of steps to become a Volunteer in Corrections.
Questions about this process or volunteering can be directed to:
Laurie Jo Holmes, Human Rights Office
Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph
20 West Ninth Street
Kansas City, MO 64105
Phone: 816-756-1850 x532
The person most important to your success and achievement at this correctional institution is the staff member with whom you work. In fact, technically, your only function as a VIC (Volunteer in Corrections) is to
assist staff members in their duties.
People are complex multi-faceted beings; so are our needs when seeking out significance, value and worth. We are more than the object of a program or the tool of a new initiative. There must be more than conformity and robotic compliance to those who have more power. So it is with the incarcerated person. Offenders are accustomed to going along in order to get along. This perspective only works until the price for non-compliance is eclipsed by the delicious fruit of self-gratification. With this perspective, no price is too high, no level too low. Many times not even personal shame, loss of one’s family, one’s marriage or the return to prison can deter this self-destructive behavior.
There is an answer. Instead of changing the direction by sheer will, the entire focus must be replaced. This is where the faith component comes into play. Many offenders are eager to re-evaluate faith principals as they realize their self-seeking strategy has failed them miserably. Chapel programs challenge offenders to address the spiritual issues deep inside that they have ignored and denied. The faith community can assist in providing the element of spirituality during and even after incarceration.
Possible Donation Ideas
All donations must receive prior approval from the Chaplain
Worship service bulletins
Religious magazine subscriptions
Religious fiction books
Religious tracts, pamphlets
Inexpensive devotional type books
Wall calendars (inspirational/religious)
Sacred texts such as bibles
New or nearly new musical equipment
Approved, consumable ritual items for holy day observances