Our Mission

L’Asurim is a Jewish not-for profit organization that provides support for prisoners; helps prevent crime, and advocates for prison well-being & criminal justice reform.

Supporting Prisoners: L’Asurim coordinates visits for family, clergy and volunteers including the transportation cost; and L’Asurim raises funds for and sends care packages to prison year-round and especially for holiday seasons. The packages contain Kosher food, reading material and religious items. L’Asurim also runs a robust Pen Pal program where members of the public are in regular correspondence with inmates.

Crime Prevention: L’Asurim helps prevent crime in the Jewish community by holding events for hundreds of people at a time where speakers such as attorneys, business leaders, prosecutors and former inmates address law and order issues. The program also distributes content in print and other formats.

Prison Well-Being and Justice Reform: L’Asurim advocates for prison welfare and overall criminal justice reform. While doing the crime generally leads to serving time, the justice system needs to accurately confirm that someone indeed did the crime without wrongfully convicting non-guilty people as had happened too often. Once convicted, the time should fit the crime and once incarcerated, prisoners’ civil and religious rights should be protected while also assuring the well-being of prison staff.

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Pen Pal Program

In an age where iPhones, Blackberries, and Skype are the dominant and preferred means of communication, there is still one distinct place where a handwritten letter remains the most powerful medium: prison.  In the prison system, our Jewish brethren typically do not have access to the latest technological gadgets that we take for granted.  Rather, most prisoners are only allowed to receive letters and, in some cases, make an occasional telephone call.

 

L’Asurim’s Pen Pal Program seeks to match volunteers with members of the Jewish prison population who may have similar interests or backgrounds.   We are seeking Pen Pals from all backgrounds and of all ages.  In addition, you do not need to have a degree in English or have won your high school spelling bee to be a Pen Pal.  Your sincere and heartfelt words are what instill hope and joy in the recipient of your letter.

 

Receiving a letter from a Pen Pal is probably the single most uplifting gesture that the inmates we serve never fail to mention as a key source of strength during their time of tribulation. For the cost of a postage stamp and a small investment of your time, you can impact the life of a Jewish inmate in an immeasurable way.

 

L’Asurim will be happy to provide you sample letters and will advise you of the guidelines to follow when sending a letter to someone in prison.  You are welcome to use our samples as the basis of your first letter or two, but we are sure that once you make the connection, your thoughts and ideas will freely flow in the letters to follow.

 

You will find a link to the sample letters on our FAQ page .  Our FAQ page will also provide you a link to our Volunteer Pen Pal Application as well as answers to many commonly asked questions.  Please take the time to browse the FAQ page to find out about this unique opportunity.

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