Trinity County farm rehabilitates inmates; saves taxpayer dollars

Trinity County farm rehabilitates inmates; saves taxpayer dollars
Soure: KTRE Staff
Soure: KTRE Staff

TRINITY COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - A Trinity County farm is flourishing in unexpected ways. Sheriff Woody Wallace is pushing to save taxpayer dollars while rehabilitating inmates with the farm. Inmates said the program is teaching them how to be better men.

Despite a one-year sentence to serve in the Trinity County Jail, Andrew Lambert, an inmate at the Trinity County Jail, has a chance to develop a green-thumb.

"Him allowing us to get out here and do this and trust us is a great thing," Lambert said.

It's a flourishing farm where Trinity County inmates literally reap what they sow.

"They're low-risk. We allow them the chance to do some work," Wallace said.

The land being used to make the farm was seized from a local drug dealer. Instead of selling the five-acre property, Trinity County is using it to turn a negative into a positive.

"It teaches them skills and gives them a sense of accomplishment. It makes them feel good about themselves," Wallace said.

"We learn more and more every day on how to live right and raise everything we need without having to depend on anything or anybody," Lambert said.

From greens, peppers, and Brussels sprouts down to pigs, rabbits, chickens and the eggs they're laying today, the farm has it all.

"It saves us a tremendous amount of money because we don't have to buy meat in the stores," Wallace said.

Taxpayer dollars are saved, and humbling experiences help inmates transition.

"It teaches you how to be a man ... responsibility and getting and going to work," Lambert said.

The sheriff said inmates who don't have a hand in planting the home-grown crops want to join.

"I get letters from all inmates. They want to work on the farm and work for our county commissioners," Wallace said.

Lambert said it's preparing him to be a better citizen in society.

"It's awesome. It gives us a good thing to go back in the community with," Lambert said.

Lambert said he plans to use the skills he's learned on the farm upon release to care for his family.

Copyright 2016 KTRE. All rights reserved.