LDO Board and volunteers develop our programs in partnership with our Inmate Advisory Board (IAB). We work hand-in-hand to identify priorities for educational and cultural development. Due to COVID-19 our programs are currently post-poned, but we hope to be back inside soon!
Every Saturday night the LDO sponsors a peer-taught Spanish class at WSR which has approximately 20 participants per session. Students are taught fundamentals of grammar and conversational Spanish in a welcoming, inclusive learning environment. To date, LDO Spanish has been one of the primary ways that we attract and retain participants of all cultural backgrounds in our activities.
This program is taught in Spanish, and will provide Latino participants, including those who will be deported upon completion of their sentence, with a Plaza Comunitaria diploma corresponding to their completed grade level, issued by the Mexican government. This will enable the participants to benefit from greater professional opportunities when returning home. They’ll have a greater likelihood of leading positive and self-determined lives after reentry. Our Plaza program is currently in-development, with planning post-poned due to COVID-19.
Hispanic Cultural Group
On Sunday evenings the LDO sponsors the Hispanic Cultural Group which includes a social hour and group check-in, an ongoing visual art workshop, and weekly lectures alternating between arts masterclasses with regional artists, and a cultural lecture series focused on history, race, and personal development.
Many of our participants are involved in a peer-led mentorship program which pairs inmates who have experience, wisdom, or skills in certain areas (such as math, writing, physical health, and much more) with mentees. Working together, they complete a certificate program to help bolster the abilities of mentees, build their abilities, and help them live a more productive and positive life behind bars.