Changing Lives: Preventing youth from going to prison

  • Meet Jennifer - A life that was changed!
  • by Melissa Gustafson, Counselor

[Melissa speaking] Hello Melissa, I don't know if you remember me but you came to my school and I went on a few prison tours with Prison Prevention Ministries. You guys changed my life. I stopped getting into trouble, I graduated with honors, I got a great job, I am engaged to an amazing man, and I have my beautiful little girl, Aaliyah. I just had to tell you. Then Jennifer said, "So I took her out to lunch to catch up and as we were talking she shares with me how impressed she was with our program and how she wants to let others know it is not a scared straight program but a tool to help youth." [Melissa] When you all took me on the prison trips and the inmates shared their stories, it helped so much. I would like for my fiancé to go on a tour. I want to be a part of what you all do at PPM.

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  • They are given by ex-offenders about negative choices and their consequences, and that change come through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Testimonial speakers will challenge and encourage youth to make better choices.


Prison Tours

  • They give youth insight about prison life, and offer tools for change to become productive members of society. PPM staff guide kids in making better decisions and connect teens to positive avenues for personal / spiritual growth. They promote mentor relationships that distinguishes the program from other “field trips.”

Youth Comments


"This trip showed me the real life consequences of the bad decisions people make. Encountering and seeing the lifestyle of the inmates made me realize how blessed I am to have people who care about me enough to teach me right from wrong. Prison and jail are certainly places I don’t want to be so I will choose the right things and stay on the right path. Just want to give a big shout out to God for giving me the knowledge to stay away from the wrong things."


"My mentor spent time with me and took me to church and when she was removed from my life I’ve been getting in trouble ever since- until… going on this trip. I have anger issues but the trip helped ...I’m not fighting as much. One of the ladies in the dorm talked about fighting and how it can lead to incarceration. I never want to be in a place like that. Since then I have been doing much better and am trying to control my anger. My mom is known as a fighter and I do not want to end up like her!"


"Today, I went on a prison trip to Silverdale. Due to the unforgettable experience, I learned that God can do miraculous things. We shouldn’t judge someone by the way they sin, when in God’s eyes every sin is equal. All I have to do is trust in Him and everything is okay. Actually, with God everything is more than okay! God planned for some of those inmates to go to jail so they can feel the love of God in their lives. Looking back at this event in my life, I will thankfully know that God can reach people everywhere in every situation."

©2017 Prison Prevention Ministries, Inc.

302 Spruce Street, P.O. Box 3026
Chattanooga, TN 37404

  • Main: (423)622-5768
  • Fax: (423)622-5571