Inmates face a lot of prejudice from the general public making it difficult for them to fit right back into society once released. Whether a convict was fairly judged or not, most people would have their guard up when talking to someone who has done time. While the stigma may not go away anytime soon, stories of prisoners successfully reforming do exist. Inside the newly opened Davao City Jail Library, inmates are putting in the work to write that story of reformation, whether it’s for society to accept them back or to simply improve their lives.
Inmates study for the future inside Davao City Jail Library
For inmates inside the Davao City Jail Annex, the founding of the Davao City Jail Library serves as a glimmer of hope. The facility opened on 13 Mar 2023 and is the first of its kind in the Davao region. In partnership with the Davao City Jail Annex, the Social Entrepreneurship Technology and Business Institute (SETBI) College runs the library as a part of their College Behind Bars program.
Apart from SETBI’s persons deprived of liberty (PDL), the library will also serve students under the government’s alternative learning system (ALS). There are currently eight inmates under the College Behind Bars program while there are 80 inmates studying under the ALS. Inmates from either program can check out books for overnight reading via borrower’s cards.
Assembling a life-changing facility
As humble as Davao Jail Library looks, the small facility comes stacked with a wealth of knowledge. Through the efforts of SETBI and the Davao City Jail Annex, the library is more than sufficient for the inmates.
Majority of the books were donated by followers of the Davao City Jail Annex’s Facebook page.
The Davao City Jail Library operates from 8am to 4pm every day.
It is true that the Davao City Jail Library is especially functional. But more than that, it serves an important purpose, encouraging inmates to boost their confidence and find functionality as they await their discharge. The founding of this library provides an opportunity for inmates to learn that there is a better tomorrow within reach.
Featured image credit: PTV Davao | Official Facebook Page