Turning Inmates into Tailors

The tailoring school at the Monrovia Central Prison, Liberia

Henry Tambade (far left), Corrections Training and Development Officer at UNMIL, with UNV colleagues in Liberia.

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11 Sep 2017

Turning Inmates into Tailors


My name is Henry Tambade (Zimbabwe). I am an international UN Volunteer stationed in Monrovia, serving as Corrections Training Officer with the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) since September 2013.

My work has had a positive impact on the capacity of trainers within the Bureau of Corrections and Rehabilitation (BCR). I have supported the project design, development and establishment of vocational skills training for inmates and Corrections Officers at Monrovia Central Prisons (MCP). The goal of this project is to empower inmates as part of their rehabilitation and to ensure their successful reintegration as law-abiding citizens.

One of the outstanding memories I have, involves providing skills training to serving inmates who are now qualified tailors who can sew new clothes for the local market. The zeal shown by these inmates to successfully complete the training was so touching that I would find myself trying to do more to support them. Being a UN Volunteer provides a lifetime of satisfying experience because it gives opportunities to assist others to improve their lives.

Although such projects are simple, it is heartwarming that these projects are changing people’s lives by bringing hope to them. 

My message, particularly for Liberian men, is to allow their spouses to be employed in law enforcement agencies so that there is an equal representation of both sexes in these organizations. This will allow qualified women to fulfill leadership positions where gender equality is an objective.