It has finally began! Our two Volunteers in Service To America and their supervisor went to Elk County and Jefferson County jails to teach the first section of their life skills curriculum. The reaction has been really positive so far. It meant a lot for us hearing their different views on certain aspects of their lives. Also the staff have been nothing but wonderful to us. I cannot wait to see how the next seven weeks play out. The first section of our curriculum was preparation for the workforce. We just covered the basics that for the most part they already knew and could relate to.
As for the atmosphere of the classes some were small only having one person in them and some were about three or four. The biggest we have had yet was in the Jefferson County Jail with up to about 14 women. I was at first really nervous about it and I still kind of am but I also feel a bit better about it. They all had dreams and inspirations for when they return to society. Most importantly the had a plan to reach those goals. It feels good when they tell us that this is something they need and it is a reason for them to come out of their cell.
If you are interested in learning what all the VISTA hype is about, contact Heather Conrad at (814) 594-2339 or firstname.lastname@example.org.