A criminal offence can colour a person’s life in very dark shades. On top of having numerous years taken out of one’s life, the person has huge issues reintegrating into the society due to prejudices and stereotypes. However, together with the progress we are seeing in our world, the attitude towards the purpose of the prison system and the status of people who are after some time once again granted their freedom has changed. Now, a lot more attention is given not to the punishment part of imprisonment, but to nurturing good character and helping people use their time in prison to develop themselves. It allows them to become responsible members of society. So what exactly are those ways in which character education is promoted in prisons?
Getting Higher Education
One of the things that oftentimes stand between a person, regardless if at some point imprisoned or not, and a good life is a degree. Regardless of how sad it is, we must admit that many companies and organizations will not hire a candidate unless they have a paper to back up their knowledge. This possibility is offered to prisoners more and more as a way to not just be able to officially call themselves experts in certain fields, but also to nurture their curiosity, patience, perseverance and determination. The fact that they don’t have much to do with their time behind bars forces them into a framework where they take up classes to stay occupied and more often than not end up rediscovering the joy of learning and improving. Leaving the prison with such a mindset plus a diploma increases their chances of reintegration into the society by miles.
Exposure to Pets
Animals are known to have an effect on people that evokes empathy and a wish to take care of someone else. Since a successful society is built upon such relationships among its members, various programmes that include prisoners interacting with therapy pets can ensure the people start developing appropriate responses to certain situation, kind feelings and in general a more positive attitude towards the rest of the world.
Character Education Programs
When some secondary methods fail, prisons can resort to programs designed specifically for shaping a person’s character. Programs, such as The Peaceful Solution, are created around a concept that a person can shift their character traits and inclinations with appropriate teaching and practice. Thus, the curriculum of these programs is written in ways that would encourage the development of moral values through conversation, seeing appropriate examples, reading and engaging in practical activities. However, it must be remembered that the program can have a completely opposite effect if not carried out properly; if the prisoners fail to take it seriously, which oftentimes happens due to the nature of the activities and the overly-emphasized self-growth ideology, the people might start despising the regular, socially acceptable lifestyle even more.