Connecting with one of the 2.3 million incarcerated individuals in America may sound like a challenge. After all, the prison system make it a challenge for these people to have contact with the outside world. However, there are inmate pen pal programs in place to help them find connections and joy.
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1. You Help Someone Vulnerable
While there are many misconceptions and stereotypes about incarcerated people, they truly are just like the rest of us. They’ve made mistakes, but they want to work for brighter futures for themself after getting out of prison. Prison pen pals often are seeking friends, jobs after being released, training programs, those to help them find homes, or college educations.
Writing a letter to someone in prison also provides them with companionship in the short term. This makes them more likely to feel connected with the world and less likely to develop severe depression while incarcerated.
2. It Reduces Recidivism
Studies show that building a connection with a pen pal also reduces recidivism rates. Those who feel connected to others outside of people are less likely to offend as a result of this emotional connection. They feel less isolated and have higher hopes for their post-prison lives than other inmates.
The relationships between prisoners and their pen pals are often genuine and caring. They’re a bright spot in the lives of these individuals can help to make them happier and all-around better people. They therefore are less likely to turn back to crime upon their release.
3. They Give You a New Friend
While you might initially be affronted at the idea of befriending an inmate, you shouldn’t be! Incarcerated individuals come from all walks of life- most of them didn’t even commit violent offenses. They have hobbies, interests, aspirations, dreams, and passions, just like you do.
Many people who write to inmates find real connections with them and help them to get back on their feet after release. These connections can last a lifetime and be mutually beneficial. You’re sure to find something in common with your pen pal and broaden your understanding of what it means to be in the prison system.
More on Connecting With Your Inmate Pen Pal
While many people have reservations about getting a prison pen pal, these fears are generally unfounded. You not only will have the opportunity to change someone else’s life. You’ll change your own as well.
Now that you know why having an inmate pen pal is a life-changing experience for all parties, it’s time to learn more. Check out the ‘tech’ tab on our website to learn about the technologies that you can use to connect with programs that allow you to easily write to prison inmates across the US.