Kristin DeVault is a sophomore at West Virginia University, who grew up in Mason County, West Virginia. Kristin transferred to WVU last semester from Fairmont State to pursue a degree in Social Work and minors in Communications and American Politics in Policy. This school year Kristin works in the first-ever Federal Work Study position for APBP. Here is what she has to say about the experience.
“Not knowing quite what to expect other than working with a lot of books, I was anxious but very enthusiastic to start this job. Now, I realize that there was never a reason to be nervous about becoming a part of this organization. From my first day, I was welcomed with friendliness, warmth, and patience from everyone. I have learned a lot at APBP. Not only do I know how to wrap a book to make sure that it survives its journey through the mailing system, I know the massive impact that APBP has on the community, volunteers, and the individuals receiving books.
“There is something very raw and touching about opening letters for the first time, as inmates express their need for educational materials, books to read as a temporary escape, or as gifts for their friends. A letter that has impacted the way I think of my work at APBP was a man writing to request materials on his friend’s favorite subject, vintage cars and motorcycles, because his friend was confined to a wheelchair and unable to access the library. My job at APBP is more than sending books to prisoners. It bridges an information and resource gap between two completely different worlds.”