A programme called CRED set up in partnership with HM Prison & Probation Service announces its bold achievements in the face of COVID challenges.
CRED (Clean Rehabilitative Enabling and Decent) enables ex-offenders to join purposeful work placements which lead to full time work and financial independence. This significantly reduces the reoffending rate.
The aim of CRED is to engage residents in work that improves their skills, confidence and employability. It also contributes to a more decent environment in the prison.
The skilled placements and mentorship are geared to residents being offered permanent work on completion of their sentence.
Despite the year-long pandemic, twenty GFSL sites continue to drive the CRED programme, involving over 240 residents. The trades include plumbers, electricians and carpenters. Others join the scheme and gain recognised qualifications from nearby colleges during their sentence.
Notable examples include HMP Hollesley Bay, when COVID absences left GFSL with no electricians able to report for work.
Helena Butler, Justice Solutions Manager said:
During those times, we relied on the dedicated CRED team and knowledge of the electricians we employ through CRED, stepping to assist, otherwise we’d have struggled to maintain service on site.
Not only did we maintain service but we saved £250 per day on hiring external contractors.
Meanwhile the list of success stories at HMP Coldingley include an ex-offender who became a valued part of the GFSL workforce. With full technical and welfare support from CRED, he was offered full time work on his release last year.
One graduate of the CRED scheme commented:
I am thankful for the opportunity I had with GFSL to work alongside their team on a day-to-day basis whilst a resident at Coldingley. I felt part of a team and treated as an equal in terms of completing tasks and contributing the work effort. I’m sure that my experience with GFSL helped me back into an electrical career. On a personal level I will never forget the friendship those guys showed me.
Paul Ryder, CEO comments:
We’re incredibly proud of how the CRED activity transforms lives for the better.
It actively demonstrates how successful partnerships with HMPPS and New Futures Network carry out essential work within the community.
The Gov Facility Services Limited (GFSL) is a Ministry of Justice owned not-for-profit company. Set up in 2018, they work closely with Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS) to deliver a range of facility services to 48 prisons in the south of England, including statutory and mandatory planned maintenance, reactive repair, cleaning, stores operation and Project works. They also help the Prison Service reduce reoffending by providing opportunities for prisoners to develop skills and gain work experience. They currently support over a million hours per year of work by prisoners across the 48 prisons we maintain.