The Christmas vibe has come early at the South Cotabato Provincial Rehabilitation and Detention Center (SCRDC) or provincial jail, courtesy of the lanterns or ‘parols’ made by inmates.
Felicito Gumapac, acting SCRDC warden, said the annual lantern display was part of their effort to showcase the skills of their inmates, who take advantage of the Christmas season to earn money.
As the “ber months” started, he said the jail’s workshop area again became busy as skilled inmates turned to lantern-making.
“As early as September, our inmates have started making ‘parols’. Many people who came here were actually impressed with their work and posted orders in preparation for the holiday season,” he said in an interview.
Gumapac said SCRDC personnel have volunteered to help the inmates in their “small livelihood ventures” by purchasing the raw materials needed for the production of the holiday lanterns.
The holiday lanterns made by SCRDC inmates are primarily made of bamboo and other indigenous materials, and illuminated by LED (light-emitting diode) lights.
Gumapac said the “parols” are sold at PHP600 to PHP3,000 apiece, depending on the design and size.
Families and relatives of the inmates help sell some of the “parols” outside the premises of SCRDC.
He urged the public to patronize the detainees’ livelihood project, which aims to hone their skills and at the same time support their families.
“This is a big help to our inmates. Through ‘parol’ making, many of them were able to support the education of their children,” Gumapac said.
Residents, he said, may drop by during the day and visit the inmates’ display area at the SCRDC. (PNA)