By Polycarp Auta
Donating the books at separate fora, Yusuf Yahaya-Kwande, Founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the foundation, said the materials would give the inmates hope and opportunities to explore new ventures in life after serving their jail terms
He added that the books would enable them contribute meaningfully to the economic growth and development of the country when free.
“Studies have shown that reading books in prison can be therapeutic; it helps to rekindle the inmates’ hope as well as educate and motivate them to explore new ventures in life.
” It can reduce stress and minimise the occurrence of violence and suicide among prisoners.
“Our aim is that after their jail terms, these inmates will go home with a new mentality about the importance of life and freedom and work to be functioning members of their society.
“They would contribute to the growth and development of the community and be role models to their friends and families,” he said.
The CEO added that the gesture was also aimed at reviving the eroding reading culture among young people, adding that this informed the donation to orphanages.
He also said the move would promote reading culture among families which may likely have no access to the books, thereby availing them the opportunity to improve their lives.
“We buy books from Spine and Label bookstore, Abuja. We also partner with them to select books of various genres and curricula for the user’s needs.
“So far, we have delivered 800 books to two orphanages, a school and prison. Our next delivery is planned for Benue prison, a school in Abuja and another orphanage,”he said
Yusuf also disclosed that the foundation had made contact with reputable publishers abroad in order to import books to execute the project across the country.
Receiving the donated books, ASC Martha Banda, the Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the Plateau Command of the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCoS), thanked the foundation for the gesture.
She promised to ensure that the inmates put them to good use.
“The books donated to our inmates will help enhance their learning ability, improve their vocabularies, most importantly occupy their minds from negative tendencies which will help contribute to their turning a new leaf and become better individuals in the society.
“The importance of books can never be ignored.
” The books are full of knowledge, they will teach them wisdom, solution, new perspective, imagination as well as improve confidence and mental health,” she said.