Prison Training: vision and values in Albania
Peter J Leonard describes the challenges of training to develop values and vision within the context of social reconstruction. Working with foreign colleagues in their own country is not easy. The pitfalls of cultural and political differences and the problems of language have to be negotiated with sensitivity and patience if anything worthwhile is to be achieved. This was especially true in 1994 in the small, infant democracy of Albania where I was sent to provide advice to the prison service. The assignment itself appeared a modest task. It comprised two parts. First to help the Albanian prison service develop a vision statement supported by a set of values and, second, to train senior staff in its meaning and applicability for their work. The intention was to provide a framework of thinking that would guide Albanian colleagues in their efforts to improve prison conditions. Behind this agenda, however, was the need for the Albanian authorities to convince Western Europe that they were serious about social reconstruction so that crucial funding could be secured.