Prison inmates cuddling and caring for fuzzy felines in a prison cell? That seems an unlikely picture. Yet, through an innovative and brand-new program at the Larch Correctional Facility in Washington State, a few very select inmates and a couple of really lucky cats have the opportunity to help each other learn responsibility, compassion and unconditional love. The Larch Correctional Facility is a minimum-security prison in Yacolt, Washington. In cooperation with the local animal shelter, the program includes two cats and four inmates.
By way of the love and rehabilitation for these forgotten felines, the inmates learn how to think about more than just themselves.
Inmates take in the stray cats and kittens and care for them in all ways–learning responsibility, caring, compassion and love. Many of these prisoners are in for hard-core crimes and many of them also have mental health problems and caring and bonding with the fuzzy kittens and cats brings out an unexpected tenderness.