More than Just a Hobby for Men at the Giles W. Dalby Correctional Facility
Video Recorded Before COVID-19 Pandemic
At the Giles W. Dalby Correctional Facility in Post, Texas residents who qualify can participate in the hobby craft program.
“It gives me the opportunity to send stuff to my family,” says J. Navarro, “which they can’t believe I make stuff in here.”
John Powell is the facility’s programs manager. “Inmates in the Hobby Craft program are allowed to do both in-cell and in-shop activities. Their activities range from painting to bead work to leather work to, also, toothpick art.”
Incarcerated men and staff recognize the value of the program.
“They’re able to keep their mind clear of anything that’s going on, on the outside,” explains Derrick Barrientez, Hobby Craft Coordinator, “and they’re able just to focus on the task at hand.”
“Hobby craft is something I can actually use when I get out,” adds J. Navarro. “If I want to make me a wallet, or make a special gift for my kids, or anything like that.”
L. Garcia agrees. “I accomplish a lot of stuff here, but one of the things that I think can probably do when I get out, I can take that with me, because now I can do another trade; do something different.”
J. Navarro expresses his gratitude. “It’s a great program for us, and I thank them for having it here. It makes my time go by really fast, and I feel productive.”
“Hobby craft is a place where you can go and learn how to do a lot of things,” states L. Garcia, “and also spend a lot of your time. And it helps you a lot. It helps you not to stress. It helps you not to get in trouble. In fact, I do a lot of stuff for my family. And they are very grateful. And they love it, and it makes me feel good knowing that they like what I’ve been making them.”
J. Navarro adds further appreciation. “I want to thank the MTC facility for having this program here because it actually helps a lot of inmates look forward to coming and doing something and using this as a little job or hobby or however you want to take it.”
L. Garcia speaks to his gratitude. “I’m also very grateful with MTC, the institution, and also with the ones in charge here. They’re great. They help us out and do a lot of stuff here, and they teach us a lot of stuff. They’re great staff.”