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Description: Two-thirds of people released from prison return within three years. A Place of Second Chances presents the hopeful stories of two individuals who prove that the tide of recidivism can be reversed, when the prison is designed to comfort and rehabilitate, rather than simply punish. Kanya Zeppeda and Robin Schwab—collectively spent close to seven years in Las Colinas Detention and Reentry Facility in Santee, California. Kanya was one-month pregnant when she began her sentence. With over half of prisoners in America’s corrections system suffering from abuse, trauma and mental illness, the County of San Diego recognized that building a healing environment to promote well-being and prevent further psychological deterioration was imperative. The first of its kind in the U.S., Las Colinas uses environmental and behavioral psychology to improve the experience and behavior of inmates and staff. Using scientifically-proven research on how light, color, materials, texture, air quality, acoustics and access to nature affect mental and physical well-being, design decisions were informed by the idea of transforming lives. This not only prepared Kanya and Robin for a successful transition back into society upon release, it also helped them overcome their past to become positive role models.
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