Introduction

This Inner Rehabilitation Programme is an exciting project done in partnership between African Prisons Project, an organisation which develops leaders and makes prisons places of positive transformation, and Exeter University. And we have the luxury of working with a great committed team in the Kenyan Prison Services who help us make this project a success.

This programme is called Inner Rehabilitation for two reasons. Firstly, it comprises techniques, tools and practices for rehabilitating the inner self. For that purpose, inmates learn how to deal mindfully with their mind and their emotions. Secondly, the rehabilitation is mostly done among prisoners. That is, a great proportion of the mindfulness training is done by inmates for other inmates.

Background

Previously to the work in Kenya, 6 senior leaders of the Kenyan Prison System had taken part in detailed 1-1 discussions with Dr Adarves-Yorno in April 2015 in London.

In 2014 Dr Adarves-Yorno and the Director of African Prisons Project Alexander McLean met at the Makers of More summit organised by Ashoka. After several conversations they agreed to develop an authentic leadership and change agency training to become part of the APP fellowship programme.

The APP programme is sponsored by the Commonwealth to enable senior managers and change agents from East African prisons to further develop their professional and personal skills and visit some UK prisons.  The course focuses on understanding the current situations faced by the leaders and helping them to unfold their personal plans for change and what they would like to achieve from the training and post training back in their prisons.

The first sessions with Dr Adarves-Yorno as part of this course took place in April 2015 in London with 6 senior leaders of the Kenyan Prison System.  Prior to this session and during the day one-to-one meetings were held with each individual focusing on their personal and professional challenges.

Following the success of the London sessions the format for the UK training was altered to include a 3 day residential training on Authentic leadership and Change agency hosted by Dr Adarves-Yorno at Embercombe. At the end of the residential training these change agents specified areas that they wanted to work on personally and changes that they wanted to instigate and implement once they were back in their institutions.

In June 2015 Dr Adarves-Yorno travelled to Kenya with the initial aim of supporting their personal development as well as the changes they were trying to implement. She also went to meet fellows from previous years.  During her time there the Mindfulness Revolution programme started to truly unfold.