Partner story: Prison Reform Trust

Partner story: Prison Reform Trust

Introduction

The Prison Reform Trust was our knowledge partner for a cutting-edge programme of Fellowships exploring prison and penal reform, from 2013-2015.

Sam Hart (CF 2015, centre) investigated trauma-informed responses in working with prisoners' familiesDownload image
"The Fellows’ detailed insights offer challenge and inspiration, and a lasting legacy of accessible examples to inform debate into the future.” - PRT Director Peter Dawson

The Prison Reform Trust works to create a just, humane and effective penal system. They were interested in partnering with us to gain insight into international approaches that would help inform their work and influence debate.

In England and Wales, about 27% of offenders go on to reoffend. The aim of the Fellowship programme was to explore ways to reduce reoffending across the UK. PRT provided the expert knowledge component of a multiple partnership for this programme, which also included funding from four major donors: J Paul Getty Jr Charitable Trust, Esmée Fairbairn Trust, Lord Barnby’s Foundation and 29th May 1961 Charitable Trust.

Over the course of three years, 48 Fellows investigated international approaches and brought back learnings to the UK. Research and recommendations from the partnership were featured in Lord Farmer’s 2017 report on strengthening prisoners’ family ties to reduce reoffending and intergenerational crime. Findings were turned into five policy briefs by researchers from Birkbeck’s Institute for Criminal Policy Research and launched at round-table events for the prisons sector, enabling Fellows to connect with and share their ideas with leading policy makers and practitioners from the Prison Service, Ministry of Justice and more. In 2018, nine Fellows were invited to personally brief the Prisons Minister. This was all aided by the expert knowledge of the sector which PRT provided.

Individual Fellows’ impacts included PC Mark Walsh establishing peer-led youth justice courts in Hampshire, prison governor Lynn Saunders establishing the Safer Living Foundation to prevent sexual crime and rehabilitate sexual offenders, and Carlotta Allum launching digital skills training for 140 prisoners a year supported by a grant from the Big Lottery Fund.

“This partnership provided an antidote to the introspection that can all too easily dominate the way we think about reform, in government or in the voluntary sector. The Fellows’ detailed insights offer challenge and inspiration, and a lasting legacy of accessible examples to inform debate into the future.” - PRT Director Peter Dawson.

Sam Hart (CF 2015, centre) investigated trauma-informed responses in working with prisoners' familiesDownload image
"The Fellows’ detailed insights offer challenge and inspiration, and a lasting legacy of accessible examples to inform debate into the future.” - PRT Director Peter Dawson

The Prison Reform Trust works to create a just, humane and effective penal system. They were interested in partnering with us to gain insight into international approaches that would help inform their work and influence debate.

In England and Wales, about 27% of offenders go on to reoffend. The aim of the Fellowship programme was to explore ways to reduce reoffending across the UK. PRT provided the expert knowledge component of a multiple partnership for this programme, which also included funding from four major donors: J Paul Getty Jr Charitable Trust, Esmée Fairbairn Trust, Lord Barnby’s Foundation and 29th May 1961 Charitable Trust.

Over the course of three years, 48 Fellows investigated international approaches and brought back learnings to the UK. Research and recommendations from the partnership were featured in Lord Farmer’s 2017 report on strengthening prisoners’ family ties to reduce reoffending and intergenerational crime. Findings were turned into five policy briefs by researchers from Birkbeck’s Institute for Criminal Policy Research and launched at round-table events for the prisons sector, enabling Fellows to connect with and share their ideas with leading policy makers and practitioners from the Prison Service, Ministry of Justice and more. In 2018, nine Fellows were invited to personally brief the Prisons Minister. This was all aided by the expert knowledge of the sector which PRT provided.

Individual Fellows’ impacts included PC Mark Walsh establishing peer-led youth justice courts in Hampshire, prison governor Lynn Saunders establishing the Safer Living Foundation to prevent sexual crime and rehabilitate sexual offenders, and Carlotta Allum launching digital skills training for 140 prisoners a year supported by a grant from the Big Lottery Fund.

“This partnership provided an antidote to the introspection that can all too easily dominate the way we think about reform, in government or in the voluntary sector. The Fellows’ detailed insights offer challenge and inspiration, and a lasting legacy of accessible examples to inform debate into the future.” - PRT Director Peter Dawson.