RISE St. Lucia Inc. has partnered with other agencies, the local private sector, and the government to promote rehabilitation of inmates at the Bordelais Correctional Facility (BCF) through a donation of sporting equipment, including balls and boxing gloves.
RISE St. Lucia Inc. Chairman Dr. Venus Cherry noted that rehabilitation is essential in the fight against crime.
“Too many times we see inmates leave prison only to be shunned by society – can’t get a job, can’t get their lives going,” he observed.
“So what are they left to but to find a way to feed themselves and their family and most times it’s illegal and they end up right back in prison,” Cherry told St Lucia Times on the sidelines of Friday’s presentation ceremony at the BCF.
“We are trying to put a stop to that. We are trying to let society see our prisoners for who they are – people who made a mistake, have done their time, but they are still our brothers and sisters, so rehabilitation is key. What better way to instill discipline in an individual but through sports and love and empathy,” the RISE St. Lucia official asserted.
He explained that RISE had collaborated with the Saint Lucia Boxing Association, Black Heart Productions, and the Ministry of Equity, Social Justice and Empowerment to work holistically towards inmate rehabilitation.
Cherry told St Lucia Times that the response was overwhelming.
“We did not have to beg corporate Saint Lucia to come on board. As soon as we asked, they quickly said, ‘What can we do to help?” he recalled.
“Hopefully, we can see when prisoners come out we have companies ready and willing to give them employment,” the RISE St. Lucia Inc. official stated.
He mentioned that the initiative to assist in the rehabilitation of inmates would be ongoing.
The BCF welcomed the donation, noting that it came at the right time and would help prevent inmates from being idle.