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£3 million for community justice

Published: 13 Mar 2017 00:01
Part of:
Law and order

Funding to support rehabilitation and reduce reoffending.

Seven community sector organisations will receive almost £3 million of Government investment to deliver services aimed at reducing the cycle of reoffending.

Apex Scotland, SACRO, Families Outside, Positive Prison? Positive Futures, Turning Point Scotland, Venture Trust and Supporting Offenders with Learning Disabilities (SOLD) will share almost £3 million to fund specialist services including employment training, early intervention, support for families of prisoners and social care support.

Justice Secretary Mr Matheson said:

“The specialist services these charities provide is a vital part of our vision of reducing reoffending rates further by addressing the underlying causes of offending. I want to see fewer ineffective short-term prison sentences used, and more community sentences, which also help people to turn their lives around, keep crime down and communities safe.”

“From early intervention to supporting reintegration back into the community, these charities are dedicated to working with people who have offended at all possible opportunities and supporting them to become contributing members of the community.”

Apex Scotland CEO Alan Staff said:

“We are developing new and innovative solutions to the problems faced by people who have or are at risk of getting criminal convictions, including training opportunities, social enterprises, school and diversion schemes. 

“This funding allows us to not only deliver our existing activity in partnership with national and local government, but to trial new approaches which are effective and sustainable in the future and flexible enough to adapt to the changing environment.  Apex Scotland is grateful to the Scottish Government for its continued belief in our ability to make a difference.”

Sacro Chief Executive, Tom Halpin, said:

“I am delighted that Mr Matheson has been able to announce this significant grant allocation to Sacro on behalf of the Scottish Government.

“Coming at a time of unprecedented challenge for both the public and third sectors in Scotland, it recognises Sacro’s achievements in supporting those who use our services to improve their lives and those of their families and communities.

“Importantly this helps place Sacro in a position of strength, to continue our work purposefully in partnership, helping create safe and cohesive communities across Scotland.”

Background

The charities being funded are:

Apex Scotland - one of the main voluntary sector providers of services to criminal justice social work in Scotland, specialising in employment related guidance and training for people who have offended.

SACRO - one of the main voluntary sector providers of services to criminal justice social work in Scotland. Their vision is for a safer Scotland, able to resolve conflict constructively and to deal effectively with offending and its consequences.

Families Outside - The aim of Families Outside is to ensure that children and families affected by imprisonment in Scotland are afforded the recognition, respect, compassion, information and support they need to mitigate the disadvantages they face due to this experience.

Positive Prison? Positive Futures - The aim of Positive Prison is to contribute to the improvement of Scotland’s justice system to reduce the harm caused by offending and to bring about changes in public opinion to support the reintegration of people who are or have been subject to punishment through the justice system. 

Turning Point Scotland - The aim of Turning Point is to deliver social care and support services across Scotland, working with people whose needs include those related to involvement in the criminal justice system, learning disability, autism and mental health, substance misuse, and homelessness. They work with people to identify the outcomes that they wish to achieve for themselves, and take a holistic, person centred approach to building their support around their identified needs.  

Venture Trust - The aim of Venture Trust is to help individuals overcome disadvantaged or complicated life circumstances, and instead move forward positively in life, learning and work. They aim to achieve this by enabling individuals to unlock and develop the confidence, motivation and core skills they need to make positive life changes, and to progress towards jobs, training, education or volunteering which is right for them.

Supporting Offenders with Learning Disabilities (SOLD) - The aim of SOLD is to reduce offending and improve support for offenders with learning disabilities in Scotland. Whilst they engage directly with people with learning disabilities, the beneficiaries of their work also includes people who have other significant communication difficulties, such as acquired brain injury, autism and foetal alcohol syndrome.