Where to begin?!
- contact RedBird (firstname.lastname@example.org) and let us know you’re interested in a pen pal!
- We will send you a list of people in prison who have contacted us and are interested in writing someone. Our list is varied, and it includes political prisoners, politicized prisoners, people not interested in politics at all, religious people, pagans, men, women, queer, and everything in between!
- start your first letter! And always, contact us with questions or concerns.
What should I write about!?
It’s true that writing the first letter can be intimidating, but it’s just a matter of getting started!
- Begin with talking about who you are, why you were interested in participating in the project, what your interests are, and maybe where you’d like to see this correspondence go. Ask them a couple questions too, like where they’re from and what they like to do for fun. You know, all that first date small talk chit chat! After one or two letters it will become obvious what your pen pal likes to talk about and how, so don’t be too nervous about the first correspondence. Just keep it simple.
- Include some basic questions in your initial letter about what kind of boundaries or restrictions your penpal might have to abide by in their prison. Sometimes you can only send a certain amount of pages, write in certain color pens, etc., and these specifications vary from prison to prison.
- Finally, maybe let them know how often you think you’ll be able to write. If it’s only once a month or every few months, that’s totally fine, just try set up those expectations from the very beginning!