NORTHWESTERN BASEBALL VOLUNTEERS WITH BJCC CHAPEL
The Northwestern Oklahoma State University baseball team donated time for volunteer work at the Bill Johnson Correctional Center (BJCC) on Tuesday and Wednesday of last week. On September 22-23, the Northwestern baseball team was extremely helpful in helping attach roof trusses and deck the roof.
“The support and generosity from the Chapel Coalition Committee and volunteers has been tremendous,” stated Jason Bryant, BJCC Program Director. “BJCC is very grateful for all the time that has been donated in making this very needed project a success. Coach Bay, his coaches, and his baseball team worked extremely hard last week in completing the huge task of assisting in constructing the roof of the new building.”
Fifteen years ago, community leaders and businesses of Alva partnered with the Oklahoma Department of Corrections (DOC) to develop a corrections facility targeting the rehabilitation of drug-related offenders. In September 1995, the Bill Johnson Correctional Center (BJCC) opened with a 300 bed capacity for minimum security offenders. Since then BJCC has seen the offender population increase to 444 in 2008, 550 in 2010, and an anticipated increase to 780 by 2011. Due to the offender growth in population, BJCC has had to convert dedicated program and religious space into offender housing.
The initial group of community leaders and businesses that partnered with DOC recognized that to accomplish the goal of reducing recidivism of the drug offender, the need for dedicated program and religious space became urgent. These community leaders and DOC partnered with World Mission Builders, an organization providing volunteer construction of churches around the world. With this partnership, BJCC is now constructing a 6,000 square foot Chapel and Visitor Center built to utilize for religious and educational classes.
Many volunteers from many different states have joined the work team in erecting the new BJCC Chapel.