Letters to the Editor

LETTER TO THE EDITOR | P.E.O. an example of island’s culture


The culture of support is highlighted in our Whidbey Island living.

The more I reach out to our community seeking assistance and benefits for those incarcerated in the county’s correctional facility, the more our community comes alive.

I recently had the opportunity to provide information and a tour of the Island County Correction Facility (the jail) to an unknown, to me, philanthropic organization, P.E.O. (Philanthropic Educational Organization). Visiting was Ms. Carol Holmes, president of a local chapter of the P.E.O. along with 12 of her sisters, including the jail’s own nurse, Nancy Barker.

P.E.O. is a sisterhood that empowers women through education. It provides a conduit for women, some of whom have experienced financial limitations or who are going through difficult circumstances, to gain access to higher education.

The jail is a fitting place to gain an appreciation of the difficulties and needs faced by young women whose uninformed choices have resulted in confinement. Some here could have benefited from the P.E.O. culture of support to motivate women to achieve their highest aspirations.

My impression is that the P.E.O. sisterhood is passionate about its mission--promoting educational opportunities for women. It fulfills its agenda by maintaining six educational projects accomplished through scholarships, grants, awards and loans.

Rehabilitation is not one-size fits all, yet often it begins with an investment in education.


Chief Deputy-Jail Administrator

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