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December 23, 2013
Star News


FFP pays fines for 33 prisoners

Thirty-three prisoners received a second chance from Food For The Poor (FFP) at the St Catherine Adult Correctional Centre in Spanish Town, St Catherine, recently.

Only after the inmates were escorted from their cells to the centre's chapel did they believe that generous Food For The Poor donors had paid the fines for their non-violent offences, and that they would be released in time to spend Christmas with their families.

In addition to releasing 37 inmates from three prisons in Jamaica, Food For The Poor also will release prisoners in Guyana (15), Haiti (10) and Honduras (22) in time for them to spend Christmas with their families.

At the St Catherine Adult Correctional Centre's newly refurbished chapel, the inmates were greeted by The Very Reverend Burchell McPherson, Bishop of Montego Bay; Father Richard Martin, pastor at Church of the Nativity, in Burke, Va.; Jevene Bent, Jamaica's commissioner of corrections; and Robin Mahfood, president and CEO of Food For The Poor.

"We pray the released inmates will recognise that God is merciful, and He is a God of second chances," said Mahfood.

During a dedication of the chapel, the inmates received words of advice from the distinguished guests. Bent encouraged the inmates to use their experience in prison to influence someone to become a better person, and cautioned them never to return and lose their freedom again.

Twice a year - during the Christmas and Easter seasons - Food For The Poor assists in the release of non-violent inmates, incarcerated due to their inability to pay the required fines for committing minor offences.

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