April Update from Herewini

04 13, 2011 Uncategorized Comments Off on April Update from Herewini

Kiora e Ken,

I was great to arrive back home safely to an on coming winter and to a happy family. I know that things will be going well with you both on the home and work front.

I have just come out from Rangipo prison where I facilitated a two day program, 9am-4pm, for 50 Maori inmates in the indigenous unit there. I gave my time free as there are huge cut backs in program monies for inmates programs especially in the indigenous units. Normally people are only allowed to work with 5-10 inmates at a time or they work with the inmates in a case management role.

The manager cleared correctional obstacles and allowed me to have all the men in the unit in one group because it takes around 14-19 staff to control them they were very nervous so one officer sat in the program room for the duration of the course – he was amazed that nothing went wrong as well as the impact of what was shared had on him personally and he started taking notes after the first hour of the program.

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The men were different at the end of the two days, calmer, reflective, harrowed up, tearful, especially as they could view from a totally indigenous perspective the seriousness of their crimes  (ranging from murder, drugs, violence, gangs…) and the impact that there offending has on their families and extended families as well as the wider Maori community – the deterioration of family values and principles is definitely on the increase at an alarming rate. Following the program the unit manager asked me to run a program for them every six months she was blown away by the effects the course had on the men in just two days so the next one I will actually sleep in the prison with the men.

Last weekend I was two days in Rotorua with 70 tribal people at a local Maori meeting house there. This was a totally different program to that in the prison with spiritually focused people.

Thanks for everything Ken miss you and I know that things will be good.

Arohanui
Herewini

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