ALA is delighted to announce our sponsorship of the African Prisons Project (APP) – a pioneering charity that works to bring dignity and hope to men, women and children in prison through healthcare, education, access to justice and community reintegration.
APP Founder Director, Alexander McLean was a member of an action learning set for Clore Social Leadership Fellows facilitated by Managing Director, Ruth Cook. Recently named in Time Magazine’s 30 under 30’s changing the world, Alexander’s interest in African prisoners began in 2004 when he worked in a Ugandan hospital during a pre-university gap year. In addition to providing corporate sponsorship, ALA is working with Alexander to offer action learning to prison officers from Kenya when they visit the UK to find ways to bring about change in African prisons.
Commenting on his experience of action learning Alexander McLean said “I’ve always enjoyed taking part in action learning sets. The opportunity for reflection and challenge in an environment of peers who understand the challenges and joys and opportunities I face has been very valuable. Action learning has taught me to ask more questions, listen more attentively and the power of reflection. Ruth was a tremendous facilitator who was always fully engaged and created an excellent dynamic in our set.”
A UK registered charity since 2007, APP has already transported more than 120,000 books to Africa and created more than eight prison libraries, including portable libraries; refurbished or built six medical centres and welfare offices; supported more than twenty prisons sports leagues and worked with over 20,000 prisoners and staff. Their award winning work is conducted against a backdrop of severe overcrowding, poor sanitation, inadequate nutrition, limited access to books and education as well as wholly inadequate medical facilities within African prisons, coupled with a justice system that imprisons people for minor misdemeanours, mental health problems or even witchcraft.