This blog is an outreach effort from the RISE UP! youth empowerment program at the Oregon State Penitentiary. The men of RISE UP! (Reaching Inside to See Everyone’s Unlimited Potential) hope to use this site to give a unique perspective to youth who may be struggling or who could simply benefit from advice and encouragement from men who may have made bad decisions in their younger days but are now working to better themselves and the community. The men of RISE UP! work with Oregon high schools, including students as well as concerned teachers, parents, and counselors; youth outreach programs; community groups; and religious organizations. Their desire is to end the cycle of incarceration, especially for youth.
Please invite youth and the adults who care about them to check in with this page frequently. Feel free to comment on any post with questions or observations. This page is being run by a professor at Oregon State University with the input of the men inside and the cooperation of the prison’s staff and administration. While there may be a slight lag in communication as we follow prison procedures, we will do our best to respond to all questions as soon as possible.