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2019-2020 Governor’s Criminal Justice Volunteer Service Awards

Killeen Organization Receives Governor’s Criminal Justice Volunteer Service Award

(AUSTIN) –The Military Veteran Peer Network in Killeen, Texas was presented the Reentry and Integration Division Award during the Governor’s 2020-2021 Criminal Justice Volunteer Service Awards program today.

The award was presented by Texas Board of Criminal Justice Chairman Patrick O’Daniel and TDCJ Executive Director Bryan Collier during an online ceremony.

“Volunteering is a responsibility that these recipients have embraced wholeheartedly and for that we are extremely grateful,” said O’Daniel.

“The efforts of these award recipients are unparalleled,” said Collier. “Every day they leave a profound and lasting impression on the lives of so many across the State of Texas.”

The Military Veteran Peer Network works with inmates with prior military experience through ongoing, bi-weekly veterans support groups. “Bring Everyone in the Zone” provides support for veterans suffering from trauma while also giving guidance on disability pay, eligibility for veterans’ programs and other opportunities incarcerated veterans may have no knowledge of or access to. The program teaches incarcerated veterans how to deal with trauma and how to develop a healthy lifestyle for the remainder of their lives. Services are provided in a safe, confidential and affirming setting for two hours, twice monthly. The Military Veteran Peer Network through “Bring Everyone in the Zone” works to assist veterans to improve their quality of life while incarcerated and maximize their preparation for reentry into society.

Accepting the Governor’s 2020 Criminal Justice Volunteer Service Award was “Bring Everyone in the Zone” facilitator Cynthia Ramirez.

The Military Veteran Peer Network is one of 6 organizations and 16 individuals from across the state recognized for their efforts to help inmates and those who are on parole or probation. They donate many hours of their personal time every year with the goal of changing the lives of convicted inmates, as well as aiding and comforting their victims.

In FY2019, there were 22,506 volunteers who provided a total of 394,214 hours of service.

Note to media: For more information, contact Jeremy Desel, TDCJ Director of Communications, at (936) 437-6052 or by e-mail at jeremy.desel@tdcj.texas.gov.