The Correctional Services Department (CSD) invited around 300 students from six secondary schools to attend the Rehabilitation Pioneer Project - A Drama and Music Performance, which is taking place under the Creation and Rehabilitation Programme at Stanley Prison today (February 12).
A spokesman for the CSD said that the aim of the activity was to enhance students' understanding of the CSD's diverse rehabilitation services and their effectiveness through the performances of persons in custody who are participants in the Creation and Rehabilitation Programme.
The event also provided the students with a chance to see persons in custody from another perspective, enabling them to become more aware of the importance of offender rehabilitation and social inclusion, and in turn offer their support in future.
Jointly organised by the CSD and the Catholic Diocese of Hong Kong Lay Prison Evangelical Organisation, the Creation and Rehabilitation Programme was first introduced at Stanley Prison in August 2010.
The Creation and Rehabilitation Programme aims to integrate art therapy with rehabilitation services. Through their participation in creative arts activities, persons in custody will be able to learn how to pursue self-exploration, self-understanding, self-adjustment and self-realisation. They will also gain the opportunity to build skills in communication, leadership, problem-solving and conflict resolution, acquiring greater respect for themselves and others during the interactive learning process.
Using innovative drama presentations and inspiring songs the persons in custody conveyed their touching stories, which also provided a platform for interaction among the students.
As ex-offenders, the persons in custody were able to personally relate to the students the heavy price they had to pay for committing crimes and the importance of abiding by the law. Furthermore, their performances sent a clear crime prevention message by promoting the rule of law, drug-free living and support for offender rehabilitation.
A volunteer instructor for the Creation and Rehabilitation Programme, Mr Liu Yu-sau, said that drama activities enable participants to gain a sense of achievement, carry out self-reflection, learn to better understand themselves, be considerate to others and understand the importance of communicating with others through the performing process.
Ah Hung (the pseudonym of a person in custody), one of the participants of the Creation and Rehabilitation Programme, said that the drama activities had helped him to feel more positive about himself and demonstrated the value of teamwork. They had also made him feel extremely relieved and happy, and he said he could appreciate a spirit of real trust, mutual acceptance and assistance among the participants. Their engagement in creative arts gave them greater hope for the future as well as nurturing a desire to be recognised and appreciated by others, he added.
The CSD launched the Rehabilitation Pioneer Project in September 2008 to promote anti-crime awareness, enhance understanding of the detrimental effects of drugs and disseminate the message of supporting offender rehabilitation among young people.
Ends/Wednesday, February 12, 2014
Issued at HKT 17:10
The Correctional Services Department (CSD) invited around 300 students from six secondary schools to attend the Rehabilitation Pioneer Project - A Drama and Music Performance, which took place under the Creation and Rehabilitation Programme at Stanley Prison today (February 12).
Persons in custody perform at the event.
Students learn from persons in custody about the heavy price they have paid for committing crimes and the importance of abiding by the law to prevent crime in the community.