What a day!
There are no pictures of this day. Due to privacy, we cannot take pictures. I hope my words can describe our day!
Sherrill, Teri, and I (S,T,and I) arrived at the prison at 11:00 AM, to judge scrapbooks made with the Cricut. The scrapbooks were created by inmates in the prison.
We went through the check-in and waited for the activity supervisor of the Mental Health Department to arrive to escort us into the very center of the complex. Even though I have been inside the prison often, there is something a little bit 'final' about the gates and doors shutting us in!
Mrs. J (supervisor) took us to a classroom in the facility where there were 3 tables of scrapbooks to be judged.
The theme of the scrapbooks was 'Past, Present, Future'.
All 45 (plus) scrapbooks had construction paper fronts and backs. On the front of each there was a large label cut from the Cricut with the inmates initials made with the Imagine! All of the scrapbooks were created using magazine pictures and Cricut cuts. Inmates could use their personal pictures, but very few have photos. The collage pages were to illustrate life before 'trouble', their life 'now', and what they want for the 'future'.
S,T, and I were given Diet Cokes, paper, and pencil to begin our task of judging the scrapbooks! We began the process around 11:15 and ended at 12:55. What an experience! Everyone worked hard on their scrapbook. We learned so much about each inmate through the choices they made from the magazines. After careful evaluation, S,T,and I choose the one best scrapbook from each of the 3 classes that participated.
The winners will have a free private showing of a movie of their choice, plus, the winner can choose 5 friends to see the movie with her. Soft drinks and popcorn will be served during the movie time! This is a super treat for the inmates!
Thank you, Cricut Lady!
This is a sincere and truly heartfelt 'thank you' to the person that donated all the Cricut machines, Cuttlebug, and everything else! One scrapbook had a full page thanking you! Everything that was donated is being used!!
At 1:15, S,T,and I went across the hall to the gym. Inmates were seated on bleachers in the middle of the floor. There was a podium, speaker system, and table set up for a short program. Then a poem and prayer was spoken by 2 inmates. After the short welcome, certificates of completion were given to the inmates for completing a series of classes through the Mental Health program. There was a table of crocheted hats, scarves, and blankets that were created by inmates in another class. These items were made for the Nacoochee United Methodist Church and will be sent overseas for foreign missionaries to use.
The scrapbook judges (S,T,and I) were acknowledged and we were able to present the winners with a certificate and handshake! There was much cheering for the winners! What a wonderful experience it was to see fellow inmates rejoice with the winners! Oh, yes, 15 other inmates are going to get to enjoy the prize, too! Each winner can invite 5 people to enjoy their private movie showing!
After the short program, everyone had pizza, salad, sodas, and cookies (from Subway)!
It is difficult to describe the complete joy and happiness this pizza party provided for the inmates! This was food brought from 'the outside' for all to enjoy. There was enough pizza to feed everyone all they wanted!! The salad...what a wonderful treat! The inmates do not get fresh vegetables (even salads) often. The cucumbers and tomatoes were so special!
At 3:30, it was time for S,T,and I to leave. We were escorted to the prison entrance. Our drivers licenses and my car keys were returned and we left! But not before leaving more paper donated by a local printing industry!
We were exhausted, but blessed beyond words at our experience!
If you have read through this post, thank you!
May you have a wonderful day!