Simon Morley, Paddy Tipping and Gladstone Hibbert
A Nottingham-based early intervention crime prevention project recently thanked the Police and Crime Commissioner for his funding which has, amongst other things, helped four offenders find homes or employment.
The Commissioner, who last year awarded £15,000 from his Community Safety Fund to Mixed Foundations’ Safer Minds Safer Street Project in Nottingham, heard how mentoring and anger reduction sessions were used with a view to preventing further crime.
In the main, the project works with young people who became involved in gang culture, violent crimes and the use and supply of drugs. Mr Tipping visited the organisation to meet the team, including founders Simon Morley and Gladstone Hibbert to see for himself how the project was progressing.
He also wanted to hear about the outcomes achieved through one-to-one mentoring, counselling and trauma management, and motivational interventions.
“I want to do everything possible to encourage projects like these that work to prevent crime and keep young people out of criminal gang activity,” the Commissioner said. “It follows that keeping out of trouble means keeping out of the criminal justice system which, in turn, means that our communities are safer.”
The project is now also looking to provide a gate mentoring service to help young offenders reintegrate into society when they leave prison. “Helping to keep young offenders away from crime also means turning them towards becoming responsible members of our communities,” Mr Tipping commented. “I was therefore heartened by Mixed Foundation’s successes in helping to get young people into work.”
Successes highlighted include the case of a violent young man who has not reoffended since working with the project, was supported into a job placement and is still working. Another example is of a participant being rehoused to prevent further domestic violence against his mother. He is now working, is doing well and receives telephone support as and when he needs it. In another case, a young man who was sleeping rough was found a place to live and now has a job for the housing association that housed him.
Both Simon Morley and Gladstone Hibbert welcomed the Commissioner’s recent visit. “We were both pleased to be able to thank him personally for his support,” said Simon. “It meant a lot that he took the time to come and see what we do and how we have invested his grant.”
Between April and the end of October last year, the project’s one-to-one mentoring helped to distance 10 offenders from crime. Outcomes included reduced reoffending rates and a reduction in substance misuse, with all 10 reporting positive changes as a result of the mentoring they received.
Cognitive Behavioural Counselling (CBT) offered to five young people was assessed to have improved mental health, achieving improvements in behaviour, increased confidence and self-esteem, and a sense of belonging and acceptance. Trauma management sessions for six participants led to a reduction in serious harm and vulnerability with clients finding a way to come terms with violence they have witnessed by developing coping strategies. All six reported that the sessions had given them the hope and vision they needed to move forward with their lives.
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Posted on Thursday 17th March 2016