Nearly 1 in 10 inmates has served in the military, nationwide. In California, this ratio grows even higher. The reason behind this number is large and complex, complicated by the trauma of conflict, PTSD, and other issues. Yet, the fact remains that a veteran is a veteran, regardless of his circumstances, and this is why we have chosen to take our partnership with the Mighty Oaks Warriors Programs one step further, behind bars, where we will reach struggling military servicemen and equip them to overcome their circumstances and change their lives.
Last Friday, Serving California, along with the Mighty Oaks Warrior Programs, brought the first ever Fight Club PTSD program to a California Department of Corrections and rehabilitation prison. 27 inmates attended to three-day fight club program, not knowing what to expect when they first arrived. The men eagerly absorbed each and every word shared to them by the facilitators, and it soon became quite apparent that there was a bond between the veterans who were there to facilitate the program and the inmates who were attending the program.
At the end of the three-day class, each inmate was given the opportunity to speak for a few minutes to share their thoughts and to identify what they were taking away from this program. Each man gratefully thanked Serving California and the Mighty Oaks Warriors for bringing such an enlightening curriculum to the prison. Every man who spoke shared how he had received profound enlightenment into areas of their lives, which they will be applying to both their families as well as to the other inmates they encounter.
Even the staff at the prison were surprised at the in-depth curriculum. One staff member stated, "I see a lot of programs come here with a bunch of fluff. But this is definitely hardcore and to the point. I am so thankful to see you here."
On behalf of the Serving California team and the Mighty Oaks Warrior Programs, I would like to thank Mr. KEN PHILLIPS as well as the entire administration of Centinela prison for opening the doors for this pilot program. We look forward to doing additional programs in your institution.
Jon Lowry, Re-Entry Director