Something good happened today. My friend Kevin gave me an application so that I can be considered for entry into the Offender Mender Certification Program. Those accepted will become trained as Certified Drug and Alcohol Counselors and get assigned to one of the Long Term Offender Programs (LTOP) , where they will help a lot of men change their lives and prepare for parole. The first part of the training would require me to move to another prison where I would receive 10 months of intensive training. After that there is a 4000 hour internship. I pray they select me.
Today I took a test in my computer class and passed it. I feel good about that. After dinner I attended the graduation ceremony for the third cycle of the Life Awareness Program and I feel really good about wrapping that up too.
I probably won't facilitate for the Life Awareness Program again until they elect a new Chairman.
Today was a good day. I attended the first meeting of the writing team for the new Theatre Group we're trying to start.
It was evident from the start, one of our members, nicknamed "Hollywood", had the most experience. He actually used to film music videos before getting locked up.
I took a full page of notes. We have a direction. I believe we could pull this off.
At 10:30am today my father came to visit me. I had not seen him in over a year. It was a good visit. I had forgotten what it was like to sit with him and talk. It felt relaxing and comforting. It felt good in my spirit. I really appreciated it. I could tell he loves me. We enjoyed each other's company until they told him to leave at 3pm.
Today I completed my first full week of computer class. The class starts with computer fundamentals. Ninety percent of the instruction comes from an instructional DVD which we watch until we feel comfortable with taking the tests. There are manuals. The DVD and manuals cover Microsoft Windows Vista, Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
The format of the class favors those who have good independent study skills. I do and I'm motivated so I'm going to excel. If I stay in this class long enough I hope to get out of it certifications as a Word Specialist, Ec=xcel Specialist and PowerPoint Specialist.
One of my neighbors approached me with an idea for a new rehabilitative group we could start in this prison. We would write and organize plays with rehabilitative themes. I loved the idea. It is aligned with my long term goals. I want to write plays and movies that do the same thing. We're both excited about this idea. As we spoke, I had a piece of paper and pen in hand, writing all of our ideas down.
Paul Pommells has been an inmate of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation for more than twenty years, and has learned much about himself, his fellow inmates, and where one can find the hope and power to change.
Paul and other inmates & friends bare their souls in words here.