Sam Hart: helping former prisoners to integrate into family life during the pandemic
Sam Hart (CF 2015), from Brighton in East Sussex, is Communications Director at Sussex Prisoners’ Families, a charity that helps families to navigate the criminal justice system. Over the past year, the organisation has been speaking with former prisoners, who have reported great difficulty in fitting back into family life in the midst of a pandemic.
Sam will use her grant to work with colleagues to provide a package of support to prepare prisoners and their families for release in a world with Covid-19. This will include a guide written by former prisoners and their families, outlining some of the difficulties faced on release as well as advice and tips on reintegrating into family life. The guide will also provide self-care techniques and links to outside agencies to help prisoners and their families and support their wellbeing. Alongside the guide, Sam will deliver a training package to prisoners and their families which will help them to discuss their past and future difficulties. Drawing on trauma-informed principles, Sam intends the support package to empower prisoners and their families, so they can develop their own solutions and prevent family breakdown.
Sam’s Fellowship to the USA in 2015 explored trauma-informed responses in working with prisoners' families. It was supported by the Prison Reform Trust.