VOICES FROM THE INSIDE - VOLUME THREE

Hear My Voice - “A lot of the skills I’ve learned through this have helped me get through it, and I know that’s going to greatly help me when I do get released.”

The Hear My Voice video series is OCE's response to the desire of the men and women in our programs to have a platform to speak to the community. These videos were made to allow them to express their thoughts by speaking from the heart. This series offers a chance for those wishing to personalize themselves, to let the public see they are people who prefer to speak for themselves. They are aware of the societal climate pushing for changes and they are not in complete agreement. Sometimes a letter is not enough; it is easier to have a conversation, but if they did write one it will be included with the video.

“When I heard that there’s the kind of perception that possibly we’re getting taken advantage of – SUPER SURPRISED. Nothing in my entire experience here has ever felt like that. I’m the one that’s taking advantage of something. I’m the one that’s getting something out of this, probably more than anybody else.”

“Let’s face it, I really needed a good reason. I’ve been hard-headed a lot in my life. It’s really always been about what I want when I want. And now I’ve realized that, hey, my actions greatly affect other people.”

“Never did I think that I would get to experience some of the things that I have working for Demand, and, um, some of the things that I’ve gone through. Some of the changes that I’ve made in my life, how I’ve grown as a person, and some of the skills that I’ve learned and developed while working for this call center. I think hands down it is the best and most amazing opportunity that I’ve had, not just inside the institution, but pretty much in my life. I can tell you that never did I think when I came to prison that I would find an opportunity like this.”

 
 
 

IN MY OWN WORDS - JOSH, SRCI CALL CENTER

Josh's Letter

I had no real skills and no prospects for work after my release.

"I think maybe the most important aspect has been the way working in the Call Center has filled my time. When you're looking down a long prison sentence, the temptation is to sit on your bunk all day or become involved in some of the readily available, self-destructive options. For me, having a place to go every weekday for 8 hours a day has kept my mind focused on positive and enriching things, instead of the alternatives."

 

We have received many letters and continue to see more come in. The responses have been fairly well-rounded with a range of positive, negative, and neutral tones. We want to share with you a letter we received from Josh. Josh resides at Snake River Correctional Institution and has worked in the Call Center for over 12 years. He believes there should be more programs like the Call Center, not less. What he has to say in the following letter is real and in his own words.

 
 
 

Read more stories like this and learn about OCE training programs and projects by visiting our STORIES PAGE.

 
 

IN MY OWN WORDS - STEVEN, CALL CENTER

Steven's Letter

I have been in and out of trouble since I was 15 years old

"I had problems thinking about the consequences before I talked. I have also had problems with finding the right words to use in difficult situations. For example, job interviews or random meetings with important people. This job has helped me open up to all types of people. I talk to at least 50 people on a daily basis. I started calling on entry level projects for the first 3 years until I learned the skills I needed to start my climb up the corp. ladder. I then got the opportunity to become a closer. I had as many as 130 callers transfer live calls to me so that I could try and sign them up with our company."

 

We have received many letters and continue to see more come in. The responses have been fairly well-rounded with a range of positive, negative, and neutral tones. We want to share with you a letter we received from Steven. Steven works in the OCE Call Center and has used this opportunity to improve his speaking and people skills. What he has to say in the following letter is real and in his own words.

 
 
 

Read more stories like this and learn about OCE training programs and projects by visiting our STORIES PAGE.