District 54 currently supports two Toastmaster Prison Clubs – one at Thomson Federal Prison (“Inside Voices”) and one at the East Moline Correctional Facility (“Hilltop Toasters”). Our goal in District 54 is to continue to help support these clubs and to start new TM prison clubs in D54.
Prisoners have very limited opportunities to raise funds to pay dues, purchase supplies etc., so a source of continuing funding is needed to support these folks.
Why is a prison TM club important? The best answer to this question is given by one prison club Toastmaster who described his club as a “gorgeous isolated pocket of positivity and inspiration in an environment that typically breeds negativity and hopelessness”. He went on to reveal how the members share similar stories of pain – being distanced from their family, shame from the crime they committed, and the desire to change themselves to lead a life of transparency (no masks). This is one important reason why prison Toastmaster clubs are important – and also why this is an effort that is worth funding and supporting as individuals and as an organization. Our goal in D54 is to help and support prisoners anticipating release to prepare them for the outside world by acquiring and improving something that can most benefit them – confident speaking and communication skills.
How can you help? Click on the “Contribute Today” push bar to enter your contact information and someone from D54 will follow up to provide you with more information. Thank you for your interest and willingness to support folks on the “inside” who greatly wish to participate in Toastmasters programs!
Prison clubs offer a chance for inmates to continue learning and practice communication and leadership skills.
Strong clubs with full meeting agendas allow a great experience for all members.
Inmates who have completed at least a Competent Communicator manual have very low recidivism (return to prison) rates.
Corrections Departments everywhere are asking for Toastmasters help in chartering and supporting more prison clubs.