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Girl Scouts Visit Cat Program at Mission Creek Corrections Center

February 18, 2016

By Angela Hosking

Department of Corrections

a gray kitten being held by an inmate cat handler. (Tim Kelly , DOC Communications)

BELFAIR – A girl scout troop recently visited Mission Creek Corrections Center for Women’s (MCCCW) cat adoption program to earn their pet badges. On Feb.6, members of the Girl Scouts Beyond Bars troop toured the “Pawsitive Prison Program,” which allows inmates to take care of cats and kittens inside their cells. The cats, from the Kitsap Humane Society, live with the inmates at the prison until they are ready for adoption.

Inmates who are cat handlers in the program talked to the girls about basic pet care and showed them how to handle a cat. Inmates also taught the girls how to make observations about a cat’s wellness based on its body language. The girls also practiced pet care by cleaning a mock cat box.

Members of the troop also made blankets and toys for each cat in the program and wrote letters of thanks for the program staff.

Girl Scouts Beyond Bars is part of the national Girl Scouts of the United States organization. It started as a National Institute of Justice Project in 1992 to build confidence and resilience among girls with incarcerated parents and has dozens of troops across the country. The Pawsitive Prison Program was launched at MCCCW in October, 2015. Since its launch last fall, inmate cat handlers have fostered 30 cats and kittens, 16 of which have been adopted.

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