“We arranged the yoga classes because we wanted to give the women a helping hand,” says KTC vice president Podchaneeporn Chamnanpukdee. “We recognised that many of the women who end up in jail are also victims.”
Klong Prem holds 4,650 women inmates, 70 per cent of them there for drug offences. Quite a few attend the yoga classes led by Tanawat Ketvimut, chairman of Jivita Sikkha the Network for Life Learning and Understanding.
Neung, a 35-year-old inmate attending the classes, gives Tanawat a squeeze as the session ends and tells him, “Thank you for teaching us. What you have taught us today will drive us forward.”
Another inmate, 38, who asked not to be named, says yoga has taught her about her emotions and helped her control them better. “I used to be really quick-tempered, but practising yoga has calmed me,” says the mother of three.