The Rising Hope Program in Ministry and Human Services is an post-secondary course of study designed to prepare people in prison for ministry or work in the helping professions while in prison and after release. The program is open to prison inmates of any faith tradition who wish to grow intellectually and spiritually and serve others’ needs. This is the path to personal transformation.
Program in Ministry and Human Services Goals:
- Provide prison inmates with the equivalent of 20-33 credit hours of post-secondary education. Provide students with learning skills that will enhance their ability to earn academic degrees before and after release.
- Further the spiritual development of our students within their chosen faith tradition.
- Explore religions and religious practices from an academic, non-evangelistic perspective.
- Examine the divine call to personal transformation and service.
- Help students examine their lives in light of their own religious tradition.
- Create a community of learners who will encourage and support one another throughout the program and beyond. Encourage students to promote fellowship and peacemaking while in prison and after release.
The Program Focuses on:
- Achieving academic excellence
- Developing a richer spiritual life
- Encouraging personal responsibility and integrity
- Fostering community spirit among program participants
- Redefining one’s role as a positive force in the community and society
- The practice of ministry and Human Services
- Peacemaking as a community-building tool
- Respect for all faith traditions
- Developing leadership skills
Rising Hope, Inc. Mission Statement
Rising Hope, Inc., provides educational programs for people in prison in order to awaken them to their innate potential to learn and grow intellectually, psychologically, spiritually, morally, socially, and vocationally, and to equip them to work effectively for the benefit of themselves, their families and others wherever their lives may take them.
Principles of Implementation
In pursuit of this mission:
- We will, because our program has been developed with a focus on Christian thought, retain that general focus. Nonetheless, we treat this subject matter academically, with respect for other religions, without proselytizing, and inviting each person to assess the material in light of his or her own perspective and faith orientation.
- We welcome, without regard to religious affiliation or belief, the participation at all levels of all who join our effort—as students, teachers, volunteers, board members, etc.
- We seek to apply principles of faith to our endeavor, asking and trusting in God, each according to our own faith for inspiration, guidance, and providence.
- We are committed to integrity, openness, honesty, and sincerity in all our actions.
- We choose to remain an all-volunteer organization in order to focus our energy on running our program rather than fundraising, and to maximize our cost-effectiveness. We thus avoid the expenses and fundraising burden that having paid employees requires.
Rising Hope, Inc. admits students of all races, colors, national and ethnic origins, religions, ages, genders, and sexual orientation to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded and made available to students of the program. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, ethnicity, religion, age, gender, or sexual orientation in the administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, acceptance of volunteers or any other administered programs.