Our Journey, Our Purpose & Our Plans
WEBS began as PFM Trail Blazers with the motto, “We Blaze the Trail that Jesus Paved.” The team began with Prison Fellowship trained volunteers and grew into a team of about 40 members representing 15 different churches. Our first focus was the Shelby County Department of Corrections Work Release Building (AOC.) We began by providing Bible Study classes for men. This ministry expanded into providing GED, Parenting, Relationship and Preparation for Release Seminars for both men and women in that facility.
We also provided weekly bible study classes for the Federal Institutions in Memphis and in Millington and yearly Seminars for these institutions.
Initially we only hosted the Angel Tree Party for the men at Mark Luttrell Correction Center (MLCC) and assisted with other activities as needed. When the facility converted from men to women we began providing seminars twice a year in both buildings and hosting an annual Angel Tree Party for the women and their children.
In 1998 we began an annual tradition of hosting a special visitation for the children and family of the women resident of MLCC. We provided transportation, food, and lodging and hosted a special two day visit that included a party and usually ended with a play written by the women of MLCC. This was done 3 years and modified by the Warden in 2001. Beginning in 2002 we were only allowed to host the party on Saturday and only approved visitors were allowed to participate.
In 2007, the Chaplain of MLCC, requested that all volunteers participate in the annual Angel Tree Party. We once again presented the idea of a shopping mall for the women at MLCC. Chaplain Harris accepted the idea and WEBS orchestrated the event. In 2007 the Winter Wonderland Event was created. Currently Winter Wonderland has become an annual event. WEBS has served about 450 women for 8 years and about 800 the ninth year. WEBS anticipates that they will serve more than 1000 in 2017.