Shown are the participants of the 7th International Conference on Human Rights and Prison Reform in San Jose, Costa Rica in April 25-29. The theme was the Mandela Rules, which were adopted unanimously in 2015 by the United Nations and named after former prisoner and South African President Nelson Mandela.
Networking was very much part of the conference. Shown left to right are bottom row: Lymarie Nieves, Puerto Rico; Martina Cicero, Argentina; and Alejandra Rosero, California and top row: Alan Vicens, Puerto Rico; Nilda Martin, New York; and Tess Kimura, Japan.
The highlight of the conference was touring El Buen Pastor Prison, the only women prison in Costa Rica. Pictured are prison officials giving an orientation to the tour.
El Buen Pastor Prison
Although it is a prison, there is a home-like atmosphere where the prisoners live.
The painting on the left was also very impressive during the tour.
Prisoners with babys
Charles Thornton and Adrienne Shaw from the U.S. visit the mother and her baby. 67% of the 800 prisoners are mothers and they are able to keep their babies.
One of the mothers and her room where she lives with her baby.
Talk with Prisoner
On the right is Heidi Cerneka who is visiting with a prisoner. Heidi spent years in Brazil as a Maryknoll volunteer working with women prisoners.
Just like home, laundry is hung out to dry.
Conference participants Alan Vicens and Lymarie Nieves who are from Puerto Rico visit in Spanish with the prisoners and their babies.