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Tuesday 12th of November 2019

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Profits of Leisure Activities for Juveniles in Correctional Institutions

Irene Sagel-Grande
IJJO. First International Conference on Juvenile Justice. Salamanca 2004.


Communication submitted in the First International Conference of Juvenile Justice "Juvenile Justice and the Prevention of Juvenile Delinquency in a Globalized World". Salamanca 2004.

Some years ago I was involved in research in a Dutch Correctional Institution for Juveniles that took place in connection with a EU Leonardo da Vinci project under the name 'Youth'.
The programme was focusing on leisure activities. The idea was to paint, do handycraft, make music or other creative activities with the juveniles. The products of these activities had to be brought to the people outside the walls by exhibitions. At the end the response of the public should be transmitted to the juveniles. Our project was organized during the 'summer holidays' of the juveniles, more correctly, the period during which the teachers were on holiday and the juveniles stayed behind while almost nothing was organized that could replace the lessons.

The project was a cooperation between the universities of Thessaloniki, Greece as leading partner, Bremen, Germany and Groningen, the Netherlands. The 4th partner was a resettlement organization settled in Rome, Italy. The project was put to practice with the help of volunteers. In the Netherlands the project took place for five weeks, five days a week in the morning and in the afternoon.

Before we could start to paint, construct cells that should be painted or make music, we had to collect the juveniles, always up to six boys, from their unit, were they spend the day-time in a living room. In this way we were able to watch what they were doing during their leisure time. We were confronted with a thick layer of lazyness and decided to add an observation study to our project, focusing on the leisure behaviour of the juveniles. The result of this study can be summarized in a nutshell: The situation could and should be better.
In the following we will discuss why leisure activities can support education in prison and promote well being of the inmates.

Our starting point is the ability to life long development all human beings have (2). Next we shall focus on learning and motivation (3) followed by a short discussion on the psychical situation of detainees or in other words on their well being (4). Under 5. the subjects ‘learning’ (3) and ‘well being’ (4) will be combined with the subject ‘leisure activities’. Then we will focus on leisure activities of Dutch juveniles not deprived and those deprived of liberty (6). We end with some conclusions (7).



Year Language

2004 English

Category Type

Grey Literature Communication


Detention, Freedom, Juvenile, Programs, Welfare


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