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Eye On Boise

Prison inmates need, uh, quilting material?

The Idaho Department of Correction reports that it needs donations of quilting material, especially batting and backing, for its inmate quilting program. “The quilting program is entirely self-sufficient, it gets no taxpayer support,” said department Director Brent Reinke. “The program keeps inmates busy and gives them a way to give back to society.” The quilts, many of them made from old prison-issue jeans and other recycled materials, are donated to needy families or auctioned to raise money for charity. Click below for the department's full announcement.

Idaho Department of Correction

News Release

Prison requests donations for inmate quilters

 BOISE, March 14, 2013 — The inmate quilting program at South Idaho Correctional Institution is in need of donated quilting material.In particular, the program needs batting and backing.Batting is typically cotton, polyester, wool or a combination of fibers, which serve as the middle layer of a quilt.Backing is the fabric that serves as the quilt’s back layer.

“The quilting program is entirely self-sufficient, it gets no taxpayer support,” says Idaho Department of Correction Director Brent Reinke. “The program keeps inmates busy and gives them a way to give back to society.”

Over the years, inmate quilters have made quilts for Boise’s Ronald McDonald House and other non-profit organizations. The quilts go to needy families or are auctioned to raise money for charitable causes.Many of the quilts are made of old prison-issued jeans, uniforms and other recycled material.

The Idaho Department of Correction will be publicizing its appeal for donated quilting material by presenting the congregation of Ten Mile Christian Church in Meridian with an inmate-made quilt.News media are invited to attend.

The event will take place at:

Friday, March 15, 2013, 10 a.m.

Ten Mile Christian Church

3500 W. Franklin Rd.

Meridian, Idaho 83642


People wishing to donate to SICI’s inmate quilting program may do so by dropping of quilting material at the IDOC’s Central Office at 1299 N. Orchard in Boise.For more information, contact SICI Deputy Warden Jay Christensen via email,, or by calling (208) 336-1260, extension 5102.

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Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

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