Services for Low and Medium Risk Offenders

The pilot known as ‘My Direction’ operates in the criminal justice system. It is about new ways to work with service users to create and implement personalised plans for their rehabilitation, while delivering the sentence of the court. Its guiding principle is drawing upon their strengths and assets, inspired by achievements in the social care sector. ‘My Direction’ tests the most promising ideas from an earlier, small-scale ‘proof of concept’ pilot on person-centred practice with the probation service.  It aspires to challenge “the orthodoxy of the dominant approach to rehabilitation in England and Wales”.

Active pilot phase during 2018, followed by monitoring and evaluation until the end of May 2020.

Geographic area and target groups:
The pilot is implemented in Hull and the East Riding, in the north of England. Participants (service users) have committed crimes and are subject to community sentences (such as performing unpaid work) or been released from prison under license.

Collaborators include the local Time Bank (opportunities to give back to the community), and the social enterprise R-Evolution which offers  meaningful work experience accompanied by life coaching.

Pilot actions:
Probation staff have taken part in training days on person centred practice, supported by Action Learning Sets. Sixty service users were enrolled and remained engaged at the end of 2018.  They and their case managers co-produce personalised rehabilitation plans based on strengths and assets. Innovative interventions include self-organised small groups supported by volunteers, opportunities to contribute to the community, and an ‘enabling fund’. The latter resembles a personal budget – as in social care – and might be used to purchase goods or services relevant to rehabilitation that cannot be accessed through current avenues.

Expected results:
Co-created enabling plans and personalised rehabilitation interventions.
Revised practice guidance, tools and training.

Stronger community involvement in and contributions to offender rehabilitation.

CoSIE partners involved:
Interserve Investments Limited
Manchester Metropolitan University

Sue Baines,