The Wise Group and St Giles have come together to create resettlement support for offenders in England and Wales, with a specific focus on providing services across the framework to support the Ministry of Justice’s Future Model for Probation.
The partnership of these two charities responds to changes in the Probation Service and both organisations have been in talks since April 2019. They have since started working together to design the interventions needed to support serving prisoners and prison leavers and those under the care of HM Prison and Probation Service.
Andy Cross, Director of Services at St Giles, said “Our organisations bring shared values to the partnership as well as our own ethos of putting people with lived experience of disadvantage at the centre of our work. More than anyone else, they know best how to rehabilitate, resettle and reintegrate into society and are the key to inspiring positive change in others.”
Both organisations have a mutual ethos of co-design, involving people with first-hand or close experience of the issues in the development and shape of services that support existing statutory service provision. One successful focus group exploring the design of mentoring, advice and guidance programmes took place March in West Yorkshire and met virtually in May to expand and pin down the key elements of this work.
Hamish Robertson, who leads the Wise Group’s justice services, said “Our mentoring-led approach is proven to provide the much needed ‘superglue’ for offenders accessing services in society. The one-to-one, non-judgemental relationship that a professional mentor has with their customer improves attitudes and behaviours towards offending, improve engagement with statutory and non-statutory services, and reduces reoffending. With input from end users, we are tailoring our service offering in preparation for the Service Categories being procured by the Ministry of Justice – ensuring our combined offer is well rounded and meets the needs of individuals, communities and stakeholders”.
If you’d like to work with the Wise Group to support people preparing to leave prison, please get in touch.