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Read stories of transformation and reconciliation from around the world.
 

Seeking Reconciliation in Botswana
As a result of regular in-prison activities, PF Botswana receives requests from families who want to reconcile with their family members. Often, the relatives are also direct victims of the offender.
Call for new thinking on prisons and corrections from the International Corrections and Prisons Association
In his official welcome speech for the organisations 2013 annual conference in Colorado Springs, the president of the International Corrections and Prisons Association Peter van der Sande explained the conference theme "Thinking outside the cell" in terms of social exclusion versus social inclusion. Below are several excerpts from his talk calling for critical examination of criminal justice and the default option of incarceration.
Sycamore Tree Project® launched in Brazil
On 28 October, PF Brazil held the final celebration event for the first Sycamore Tree Project® (STP) to be run in the Masculine APAC in the city of Itauna. During the event, the six participating victims and six participating prisoners (called recuperandos in APAC) shared about their experiences :
Tending deep wounds
In October, PF South Africa held its last scheduled Sycamore Tree Project® (STP) course for 2013 in Pretoria Women’s Correctional Centre. The 18 prisoners and six victims addressed many issues related to crime and the harm that it causes. For one, the programme offered an opportunity to address the deep wounds of racism and violence from her country’s past.
Study offers cost-benefit analysis of the InnerChange Freedom Initiative
In an article published in the International Journal of Criminology and Sociology, Grant Duwe and Byron R. Johnson provide an estimate of both re-offense cost savings from and tax contributions of graduates from the InnerChange Freedom Initiative (IFI) in the state of Minnesota.
Updates from Brazil
More states and municipalities in Brazil recognise the importance of humanising the prison system and embrace the APAC methodology as a strategy for doing so. A quick look at the PF Brazil website shows a list of 79 APACs in the state of Minas Gerais and a total of 11 more in five other states.
Welcome Phil McCarthy, New National Director for PF New Zealand
Prison Fellowship New Zealand is thrilled to announce the appointment of Phil McCarthy as their new National Director starting 1 October 2013.
Legal aid in Togo
At the end of 2012, 65% of the 4,060 people in Togo’s prisons were on pre-trial detention[1]. According to one human rights report[2], the majority of those were eligible for release as they had served half of the possible sentence for the crime with which they had been charged. In response, PF Togo created a legal aid programme to assist prisoners in accessing this benefit.
APAC Hungary
PF Hungary launched its APAC programme in 2009 inspired by the APAC methodology developing by PF Brazil. Due to constraints in the Hungarian prison system, APAC Hungary focuses on the development of family relationships by encouraging interaction through visits and letters. To facilitate this, the programme helps address obstacles such as travel costs to allow relatives to visit their loved ones in the APAC unit.
APAC Costa Rica
APAC Costa Rica first opened in May 2006 with 20 recuperandos – as prisoners are known in the APAC methodology -- in the Centre de Atención Institucional Cartago. Three years later the programme moved to a different province where more prisoners could participate. In early 2013, APAC Costa Rica operated in the Centro Semi Insitucional San Augustin where the programme can house 80 recuperandos.
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