Saturday, August 06, 2011

Books Through Bars

Just thought I'd put up a quick post to plug a program that looks useful for my patients. The Prison Book Program sends books to prisoners who request them from many states. I appreciate this because one of the frequent questions I get in my clinic (after "Can I have some of that coffee?") is "Got anything to read?" Boredom is the common denominator of most prisoners, and having something positive or useful to read is a good thing. Check out the YouTube video about the program too.


rob lindeman said...

Reminds me of Eddie Murphy's sketch on SNL entitled "Prose and Cons". Devastatingly funny. Check it out.

Anonymous said...

i've volunteered with them. A neat way to spend a morning -- reviewing letters and packing up books.

One thing I noticed was that they books requested and the books donated were often a mismatch. So people would prepare for the GREs and then donate their study guides once they were done -- but overwhelmingly more prisoners were asking for GED study guides. And few people were donating those.

Sunny CA said...

Thanks for the information. I found the closest donation center to my house, just 10 miles from here using information you posted.

The site I found said the books for prisoners programs urgently need people to also contribute money for postage plus funds to purchase the requested books that don't come naturally from book donors. I read the list of "most requested" books and none of them are books I have ever owned. Also most of the sites specified that the books may not be hardcover which rules out many of the books I have to donate. Still, I am sure I have some to donate. They spend about $3 per book to ship them to prisoners even if packing material and help packaging is donated.

Clink Shrink: I would be interested in a blog post about the heavy use of solitary confinement that has recently come to light in California prisons. I thought perhaps you would have insight since the articles I read have mentioned that excessive solitary confinement can cause mental illness. Do you have insight on this topic?