Here is a great piece about Johnny Cash and his work for prisoners and prison reform from BBC. Take note of the additional links and info about prison included in the right hand side bar of the article.

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  1. Samantha says:

    How can I donate to the Texas prisons? Can I donate to a specific unit? Can units have entertainers come and entertain?

    • Texas Magnum says:

      Hello Samantha, It is kind of you to want to help. One thing that you can do that is very ncie for inmates at this time of year is to simply send them greeting cards. Some individuals have lost all touch with family and friends and get no visits or correspondence at all. It’s hard to simply donate because they money you sent would not directly go to any inmate unless you directed it to a specific person. Inmates get funds by people sending money to their commissary account, and they can use it for things like food items, hygiene supplies, writing paper and stamps. There are many indigent people incarcerated, and the law says the state must supply them with minimum needs but it really is minimum. Often, other prisoners help out the ones without any family by making sure they have at least the hygiene products they need, etc.
      As far as going to entertain them, that takes quite a bit of bureaucracy, it’s defintely not as simple as just calling or showing up. There are ministries and programs that do go to prisons to bring them entertainment, hopeful messages, etc.
      One organization that I can’t say enough good things about is The Human Kindness Foundation. Their website is http://www.humankindness.org/ and they have done wonderful work with inmates for many years. You can contact them and you can donate to them to help their works. They send their book and newsletter free to inmates and it has helped so many. I am a huge advocate of their work.
      If you wanted to learn more I suggest you visit the large online community called http://www.prisontalk.com. They have a forum with many subjects and if you wanted to learn more about how to do any sort of outreach work for inmates this is a good place to start too. Bless you for wanting to help.

  2. Steph says:

    Interesting article. Interesting fact: Merle Haggard was one of the inmates at San Quentin when Johnny Cash played which is what prompted Merle to get into performing himself.