(Shutting the Revolving Prison Door)
Recidivism rates in Zimbabwe are particularly high with studies revealing that 58% of released prisoners have been incarcerated before and 20% had an estimate of 3 or extra prior convictions. This program seeks to prepare inmates who are in prison with effective rehabilitation programmes to assist them in building a positive life upon release.Ex-offenders need transformative empowerment through engagement in rehabilitation programmes for them to lead sustainable livelihoods in post-prison life.
The engagement in new crimes and re-incarceration of ex-convicts highlight the uphill battle faced by the Prison Services in their effort to rehabilitate and reintegrate convicted persons. Upon release from prison ex-offenders are confronted with a challenge such as finding employment and shelter. Lack of family and community support without well designed and implemented rehabilitation programs they recidivate. When released from prison, ex-offenders face the same unmet needs which force them to commit other crimes as they attempt to meet their socioeconomic needs (Muchena, 2014).
According to the Zimbabwean Constitution education is a basic right for every person as such, the education of inmates strives to guarantee that they have a starting point for when they are released. Specific programmes for rehabilitation and treatment are not present in the Zimbabwe prison system and thus offenders are released when they are not prepared to deal with the outside world. Offenders need transformative empowerment through engagement in rehabilitation programmes for them to lead sustainable livelihoods in post-prison life.
To ensure that ex-offenders are fully prepared in prison with effective rehabilitation programmes to assist them in building a positive life upon release. Harambe Trust will play a vital role in reducing national recidivism by improving the economic opportunities of released ex-offenders. Acknowledging that education can have a far reached positive effect in helping inmates to gain the skills they need to prepare them for employment and entrepreneurship, we are committed to the development of sustainable programs that can help interrupt the trajectory of these often marginalized members of our society.