HeartWork Personal Development Program
HeartWork is a registered PBO (Public Benefit Organisation) Section 21 Company in South Africa. A PBO is an organisation that has a sole objective of providing one or more Public Benefit Activities (PBA) in a non-profit manner. Our Service is solely focused on the current and recently released offenders of Correctional Facilities that are demarcated within the greater Gauteng Area in South Africa. HeartWork has been in operation since 2002. Our current 19-year experience ranged from having 18 participants to our current 300 participants yearly. We aim to expand our reach even further in the near future.
Main and Sub Objectives of Heart Work
The HeartWork programme is a personal development course that spans over nineteen weeks. The main Objective of the HeartWork Organisation is to reach offenders who have not been exposed to personal development, or never had the opportunity to learn about their personal emotions in a controlled and secure environment. The Sub-Objective of this organisation is to curb the re-admittance rate that most offenders are faced with after they get released from Prison. Therefore, the HeartWork course does not only focus on a healthier way to combat the current regressed emotions whilst the participants are inside prison, but also with coping mechanisms and integration styles when they get released from prison. Therefore, we are actively fighting the recidivism rate that is exceptionally high in South Africa at the moment.
Why is there a need to work with offenders?
Many argue that there is a greater need to assist others in various parts of this country that we live in. However, most offenders currently are going to re-offend since they are not aware what presently influences their decision-making, and the fact that they have never been faced with different choices of possible living. This is where we come in; through working hand in hand with the Correctional Facilities Social Work Department, we can reach the participants on a deeper level than before attempted. Our current rate at which participants, that have completed our personal development course re-offend, is at 5% versus the current 80% recidivism rate and higher that South African currently reports on.
Where do we currently operate?
As it stands, we currently offer this course in six Correctional Facilities that are located within Gauteng and outlying areas in South Africa. We work with the Leeuwkop Correctional facility weekly, together with the male section in Boksburg-, Pretoria Central Prison, renamed Kgosi Mampuru II-, Zonderwater (Centre-A and B) and the Krugersdorp Correctional facility.
What makes us different?
We strive to go beyond from just offering a personal rehabilitation course. Not only do we go to different centres weekly to present the various topics, but we also work with the family members of the offenders (when possible) to facilitate a smooth transaction when the current inmate is released. Moreover, we are actively involved in the reconciliation process between the offenders and their victims, and furthermore encourage each participant to seek forgiveness and to face the consequences of their previous actions.