Through Grow with Google, Pauline Rogers shares hope and digital skills training with those Incarcerated
By: RECH Foundation
The Grow with Google Fund for Justice-Impacted Communities program has helped more than 10,000 people impacted by incarceration obtain digital skills. RECH was one of the recipients of the grant in 2022 and after completing the training herself, Pauline Rogers has been sharing the curriculum with volunteers and the prison population with amazing results.
Equipped with paper handouts, RECH has been traveling to facilities around Mississippi, sharing digital terminology and capabilities of computers and phones. The goal is to give them the knowledge so that they are more familiar with computers and technology when they leave the facilities.
"This knowledge is important because for many of them they are coming out into a foreign world when they are released," says Rogers. Thanks to the Grow with Google program those incarcerated are able to formulate skills and abilities that can help them build a resume and give them the assistance they'll need when released.
"It has been rewarding for me to see the expressions on people's faces, even though we're doing this training on paper," says Rogers who has taken the program to thousands throughout the state, including Central Mississippi Correctional Facility, Harrison County Correctional Facility and the Gulfport area. "It's like bringing them from an ancient world to modern day. Especially for those who are long-term or have life sentences. Some have not been allowed to participate in any kind of continual education. They have fallen behind. There was no education for them. To hear some of them say what it's done for them and what they can share with others is heart-warming. Some are using what they learn to be a tutor and educator to their children and others."
For Rogers, the Grow with Google Fund for Justice-Impacted Communities has been an additional push in her advocacy work to make sure that those who are incarcerated know they are not forgotten.
"RECH is committed to helping the incarcerated and justice impacted families be on the cutting edge in digital knowledge. We will work to position them to make the best (lives) for themselves, their families and their futures," she says.
Armed with digital tools from Google and the support of the communities she serves, the work continues. Discover Rech at www.rechfoundationms.org
Find out more about Grow with Google Fund at https://grow.google/