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72. Posted by rbyslipahs (Respected Member 349 posts) 9y

Hey, Mel:

I don't know about in Germany, but in the US, we can get just about any book in any available language on Amazon. I was looking for Harry Potter a while back in German. Hard for me to find otherwise. :)

Are the prisons in the same place? I know there's a separate women's facility, and I know there is a prison north of Bangkok. The same location?

The first time we stayed in BKK, we stayed in a northern area of BKK in a quiet neighborhood, and I know it wasn't very far away. We didn't have time to go then, and the second time, we stayed close to the airport.

[ Edit: Edited on Jan 12, 2007, at 8:57 PM by rbyslipahs ]

73. Posted by nfiocca (Inactive 3 posts) 9y

Hi Mel,

People are in prison all over the world, some guilty - some not. Some have had a fair trial - some not. This is not the issue!

I want to say thank-you for bringing this issue alight. I completely understand and support your intentions. And please don't be discouraged by the narrow-minded people of the world - there will always be those who will try to hold another down.

You have done a good thing!

Take care,

Natalia

74. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

Hello Rbyslipahs

I only know the address and how to get to one of the prisons.
It is a mens prison, with both foreigners and Thais in it. That is probably the one, u mention, in the north of Bangkok.
As far as I know, there are 2 other prisons, in Bangkok. One is for women. I dont know who is in the other. Apparently, the conditions are worse, in these 2, than the one I visited.
If u want to visit a prisoner, from the US, the consulate might give u the name of one. The prisoner would be very glad of a visit from somebody from their own country. Also, the ones who dont advertise get fewer visits, so they would really love, if u got their name from the consulate and visited them.

I think, if I order English books, in the shops, I could probably get any I want. But, in the libraries, I only have to pay a small fee, to read as many as I want. If the libraries ever run out of books for me to read, then I will start ordering and get some of the books people recommend.

Mel

75. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

Hello Natalia

U are welcome.

On the positive side, I think the narrow minded people are teaching me a lot about communication and patience. Not a bad skill, when one insists on digging up information on human rights and discussing them, with others.

Mel

76. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

To those who write to prisoners
I have just come back, from a trip to Thailand. I visited Jody Aggett, in Bangwang prison, for the second time. He is receiving less than a quarter of his mail. I presume it is the same for all the prisoners there.
If u have written to a prisoner and not received a reply, it may be because they have not received your letter. I suggest u write again. Keep a copy of letter, and then resend, after a couple of months, if u still do not get a reply. Put your address on all correspondence, even if u have already sent it, in previous letters. Let the prisoner know, how many letters u have sent and how many u have received. Be diplomatic, when u do this. The prison guards may read the letters, so dont openly complain about them not delivering the mail. This may effect how the prisoner is treated.

To those who visit prisoners
For the last several months, only family are allowed to visit prisoners.
Say u are related. If u are not from the same country as the prisoner, then say u are a cousin.
If u want to bring the prisoner a present, bring fruit. Not much else is allowed into the prison. If u want to give other things, u can try mailing them. Things in packages seem to be getting through, at the moment. But there is no need to bring anything. They will be happy to have your company alone.

Be patient. Dont give up, because they truely love to get letters and visits. ;)

77. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

Just want to bump this, to the front page, in case there is anybody who did not yet see it. ;)

78. Posted by CanadaGuy (Respected Member 199 posts) 9y

Good work Mel-
I see this post was started several months ago, but I had missed it- I know when most of us travel, we try to think about if there is something we can do to make a small difference to others where we are visiting- volunteering, etc etc... I honestly would not have thought about visiting prisoners, but you opened my eyes to this and I would consider it on my next trip ( and can't wait for that ).

While some have commented that they are "just prisoners" and have to pay a price for whatever crime they are accused of, the words of John Bradford should come to us all "There but for the grace of God go I", and I have no doubt that these visits mean the world to them...

79. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

Thanks Canadaguy:)

They are still paying the price, even if we visit them. People need not worry, that they are not being punished enough. But they love visits and I love chatting with people and it is nice to have a pen pal. I havent written a paper letter to anybody else for years except this prisoner I visit.

Here is a website with a list of prisoners, who would like visits and/or letters. When u choose one remember that u will only be allowed to visit if u are a family member of the prisoner. For example, if u are a white person, and u choose somebody from Nigeria they are unlikely to believe that u are a family member.

http://www.usp.com.au/fpss/pris-bangkwang.html

There are also a couple of other prisons, in Bangkok. I go to this one, because the location is convenient, for where I stay, when I am in Bangkok.

Mel

[ Edit: Edited on Jun 26, 2007, at 6:27 AM by Mel. ]

80. Posted by oslaue (Full Member 571 posts) 9y

their is local people who deserve your time! why give your time to a criminal and westerner who is in that very prison for a very good reason? do you have time to go to a prison and see a complete stranger who is probably from your own very country? there is a lot more good that one can do in bangkok!

if you want to speak to dope heads who are on a life sentence go to bangkok hilton. they took the risk now they bite the bullet.

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