JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Jackson County Sheriff Charles Britt is hoping a new addition to the jail will make a big difference in the lives of inmates. The sheriff and the jail staff are working to bring a full time chaplain to the facility.
By law, the ministry can not be funded through the sheriff's Department's budget. Instead, donations from businesses, churches, foundations and individuals will pay for the services.
The Jackson County Adult Detention Center has never has a full time chaplain. Right now, inmates currently worship in their housing areas with local religious volunteers who visit throughout the week.
When the new adult detention opens next spring, the larger facility will offer multi-purpose areas which may be used for worship. There are a number of rules jail staff members and volunteers have to follow to make sure the religious activities remain voluntary for inmates.
Officials also hope to start a Meals-on-Wheels program, and offer culinary training for inmates as part of the food service contract. Inmates would prepare three meals a day to be delivered to needy and elderly community members. In exchange, participating inmates would receive creditable training in culinary skills, which could help them land a job after serving their sentence.