HIV Peer Programs, Attachment, Female Prisoners, Prosocial identity
This article explores the importance of social bonds in facilitating an investment in prosocial behavior amongst female prisoners working as HIV peer educators. Female prisoners can lack strong prosocial attachments to both individuals and institutions prior to incarceration. Absent this bond, little prevents the female prisoner from recidivating. Prison provides an opportunity to fashion new attachments that will assist in the reintegrative process. One way to create strong bonds of attachment, particularly for women, is through working as an HIV peer educator while incarcerated. In order to measure attachment levels, interviews were conducted with 49 female prisoners who worked in two HIV prison-based peer programs during their incarceration. Female peers developed strong attachments to one another. Such attachments were formed while incarcerated and were maintained upon release, thus serving to bolster support for newfound prosocial identities.
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