HIBU Community Magazines

Dick Sederquist's Volunteer Prison Ministry

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Dick Sederquist is dedicated to the goal of reducing mass incarceration and recidivism in our prisons. Toward that goal, Dick created and conducts an eight-session workshop motivational program called "Life Change Discussion Group" for inmates in a Connecticut medium security prison. His program has affected the lives of over 120 inmates over the last four years. The objective of this program is to improve communication skills and develop life coping strategies. Dick's volunteerism was recognized in an article that appeared in the November issue of Inside Middletown. This article is being posted with permission of hibu community magazines.

Dick sees two avenues to changing the present state focus of funding prisons and imprisonment to investing in programs that will ensure successful inmate reentry into our communities. This concept of change in focus is popularly called "Justice Reinvestment". First, as a concerned citizen, is his commitment to volunteering his talents to serve and show his moral support for those individuals presently in prison. Somebody on the outside truly cares about these individuals. Second, is his advocacy of focusing state and community activities to invest in offender counseling, rehabilitation and support systems including affordable housing and access to education and jobs to ensure success in community reentry.

This is a pitch for citizen involvement both inside our prisons as volunteers and on the outside to support programs providing meaningful encouragement and employment to those reentering society. Successful reentry means returning an individual as an active citizen, spouse and parent and to the rolls of employed taxpayers, a win-win for these individuals and their communities.

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