Prison Chaplaincy – Clyde Colls

Meeting 2353: Speaker Clyde Colls:  Prison Chaplaincy – A Daunting Task?

Captain Clyde Colls is a Salvation Army Officer who is a prison Chaplain for South Australia.  Being a prison Chaplain is a daunting task.  "We all need to remember that there is a human behind the prisoner’s nameless, faceless mask and we need to help them to discover themselves, or otherwise they will become harder", Clyde said. 

There is a ‘school’ inside that teaches prisoners what to do next time so they don’t get caught. 

Each state has a different take on Chaplaincy.  It would appear that in South Australia, prisoners are put in prison only to be punished, with very little rehabilitation.  In New South Wales and Victoria, there is a much stronger rehabilitation process.  South Australia is ‘proud’ that all it’s prisoners are treated the same.  There are 2227 prisoners in SA and there is a high recitative rate, while in NSW and Vic, there are less prisoners per head of population and a lower recitative rate. 

Who is the bully?  The prisoner or the state?

Prisoners are able to do programmes inside to help them get out sooner by assisting with parole:—e.g. anger management.

The Salvation Army has taken a ‘Positive Lifestyle System’ in to the prisons.  The course was devised in Canada by the Salvation Army. 

The topics covered are:

1. Self awareness
2. Anger
3. Depression
4. Stress
5. Loneliness
6. Grief and loss
7. Creative problem solving
8. Assertiveness
9. Self esteem
10. Goal setting

Faith systems are built into the course.  Manuals are $40.00 each and the SA government does not pay for them.  After the 10 week course, participants are given a certificate.

Prisoners: Deserve the right to be treated as humans
                Deserve the right to be given a chance.

Clyde was formerly a member of the RC of Elizabeth, but 6½ years ago was transferred to Perth.  Three years ago, he decided to come back to Adelaide and became Divisional Chaplaincy Services
Co-ordinator.  Ever since then, he’s been in and out of gaol!!

Clyde is available to talk to Service groups.

Contact: Captain Clyde Colls, Divisional Chaplaincy Services Coordinator, 
Phone: 08 8368.6800, Mob: 0408.322.378