INTERNATIONAL COMMITEE OF THE RED CROSS (ICRC): A BEACON IN PRISON VOLUNTEERISM

“Volunteers don’t just do the work ~ they make it work.”
                                                                                                             -Carol Pettit

An officer once complained that there is a group of foreigners dipping their noses in the business of prison administration.  My response is:  “Be glad.  We have volunteers in our midst.  Let them check everything that we do.  Let them review everything that we have done.  Let them check every nook for faults.  Let them offer their time to evaluate our jobs.  And at best, let us listen to them about their impressions and assessment on how best we could serve our universe.”

I added: “ You know how it would cost our institution if we will contract a group to perform this deed?  A fortune!  And here is one group dedicated to do it for us freely  not only with genuine concern but purely out of love.”

I have been in the prison service for as long as I can remember (35 years to be exact) and for as long as I was tasked to handle a prison establishment, the findings of ICRC have been my guiding reference.  It has been said that one cannot appreciate the forest if one is inside it.  One must be at the far side to see the forested side.  One needs somebody who is objective and neutral, without any self-interest or self-serving agenda to determine what specific consideration needs to be addressed.  That is the value  and and worth of an ICRC report.

Sometime ago, I was approached by a group of graduate students requesting permission to conduct a research on prison administration.  But before I consented, there was a catch.  I must have to sustain the group in terms of transportation assistance and subsistence.  I sadly turned it down, we have no wherewithal to maintain a private endeavor .  Then a group of professionals submitted a formal  proposal to conduct an institutional audit so that my administration will be able to determine which area in prison management needs reinforcement, needs review, needs examination.  The cost of the proposal  however was very prohibitive.  I had a choice:  To disregard these groups and suffer ineptitutde  because it is expensive and may not sit well with government fund economy OR accept it, pay however steep, and be upgraded.  For a time I was in a quandary until a group of caucasians entered the picture.

At first, their presence was suspect.  They were telling us, prison administrators, after seeing a group of prisoners lying on the floor sleeping one lazy and humid afternoon that we were cold in the treatment of prisoners.  We had a good laugh.  Filipinos, in their respective household in the free community, would prefer to take a nap on the floor every afternoon to pass time and recharge.  Same is true with Filipino prisoners.  The foreigners quickly took note and joined us in amusement.  They came to assist prison administrators in determining which part of the prison service may require their support.  And their reports and findings were so meticulous that if at all I would have the same coming from professional auditors or scholars, the latter’s product would surely suffer in comparison.  Their (ICRC) reports were cerebral and they would even take  time to discuss their findings.  Faced with economy, they would even propose to handle a project.

With volunteers coming from this rabid and committed professionals, public service is blest with accomplishments.  Furthermore, society becomes livable and the world becomes a paradise for commitment and dedication.

Advertisements

About vjtesoro

A perpetual student of Corrections

Posted on September 3, 2012, in Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Its like you read my mind! You seem to know a lot about this, like you wrote the book in it or something. I think that you could do with a few pics to drive the message home a little bit, but other than that, this is fantastic blog. A fantastic read. I’ll certainly be back.

    Like

  2. I’m not sure where you are getting your information, but good topic. I needs to spend some time learning more or understanding more. Thanks for fantastic info I was looking for this info for my mission.

    Like

  3. Is there any other kind of blog posts involved with this particular one??!

    I would personally wish to investigate a little more about
    this unique field! I really like your postings, nevertheless I really want a little more help and advice regarding top 100 multi level
    marketing companies. Thanks for your insight!!!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: