On May 20-22, 2019, Concepcion Vocational School (CVS) even for just 3 days reduced institutional problem behaviors by replacing inmates’ idle time with constructive work, making pandesal and cookies.
Dr. Alvin L. Yturralde, CVS School Administrator emphasized that the overall goal of the training is to reduce inmates’ risk of “going into it again” by teaching them marketable skills they can use to find and retain employment following release from prison Bureau of Jail management and penology (BJMP).
Being the focal of extension and linkages, Dr. Irene B. Taborlupa arranged the conduct of the training and coordinated with Ma’am Cecile Tamayo, female jail warden of Tarlac provincial jail. With so many changes due to irreconcilable schedules and availability of equipment, it has finally been materialized. The huge 2-decker, 6-tray oven was transported with the effort of the BJMP, tools and materials were delivered right on the day.
The trainer, Dr. Mary Grace L. Ocasion at first was hesitant due to some misconceptions received about People Deprived of Liberty (PDL). But once you get the chance to meet and greet these people, you will discover a lot of things, and reasons of being a victim of their own destiny.
During the process of kneading the dough, the partners take turns, one after the other, as the dough becomes smoother, they realize that it is getting lighter and easier, which signals that it is ready to rest for 1 hour. While waiting for at least an hour, inmates approached the trainer and asked some questions regarding bread making then later on talking about their personal issues. An hour has passed, and the rested dough is now ready to form baton which will require again another hour to rest before finally putting them in the oven.
The bottom line of the training focused on the life skills extended to the inmates, not how delicious the pandesal are, or how chewy the cookies are, but the help extended to these people once they receive freedom. It may not be as big money in an easy way, but the process teaches these people how to live decently, humanely under God’s way of moulding them to become purposeful persons.