FORT MADISON –The Vets Behind Bars incarcerated individual organization at Iowa State Penitentiary has been around since 2005. The group strives to serve as support system for incarcerated veterans and to give back to the community both inside and outside of the prison. There are fifty verified incarcerated veterans at ISP, the VBB group is membership based and is led by a staff inside sponsor.
Correctional Officer Kris Newman is the current inside sponsor of the organization. Newman served in the Army from 1985 to 1998 and started his career with the Department of Corrections in 1999. “I enjoy working with the Veterans at ISP, it has a special meaning to me, and we make a difference” said Newman.
The Vets have a long history of donating to charity. Groups like the Veterans home in Marshalltown, Domestic Violence Shelters as well as Special Olympics. This holiday season the group decided to make Christmas brighter for area children with a $600 donation to the local Christmas for Kids Organization.