Criminon offers free correspondence courses by mail for inmates. This grassroots program was instituted in 1989 by a handful of volunteers and continues to be administered today by hundreds of Criminon volunteers across the world. Through mail or email, trained volunteer supervisors administer correspondence courses to inmates. The Way to Happiness is always the first course, and when complete, the inmate can then choose from a list of options of the courses he wishes to take next, and continue until he has completed the program. The courses include Learning Skills for Life, How to Deal With Ups and Downs in Life, Successful Parenting Skills and Understanding & Overcoming Addiction.
The way the correspondence courses work is simple: An inmate finds out about the course either through word of mouth or materials provided to the prison. He writes in to start a course. Criminon sends him the appropriate course materials, which include the course book and the accompanying lessons and drills. The inmate reads a chapter or section of his course and then immediately does the corresponding application lessons. Such action ensures that he will see how the material actually applies to his life, and thus the learning becomes practical knowledge instead of some abstract idea.
All lessons must be answered and mailed back to Criminon where a correspondence course supervisor grades the responses and results of what the inmate has done. These are then returned to the inmate, who then either corrects what he has done on the previous chapter, or if everything was understood and applied properly, continues onto the next section of his course.
This approach guarantees that the inmate never goes beyond a section without complete comprehension, and the ability to successfully apply the lessons to his life. With these correspondence courses, any inmate in any part of the world can reap the benefits of the Criminon program, and can restore to himself his self-respect, his self-trust, and can learn to live with honesty and integrity – all of which combine to make a life of decency and happiness.
“The Way to Happiness course has introduced an alternative to the failing life I once lived. An alternative that has challenged me to dare to succeed. I have been reborn. This course has resurrected from my conscious things which I felt were lost, i.e. self-respect, pride, love for myself and others, etc. I have been given a new lease on life and I feel that I can overcome anything. I have acquired the necessary tools, knowledge and understanding to excel in society. I have a second chance.”