Beyond Youth Custody


By the time Jack was 18 he had served seven separate custodial sentences in Young Offender Institutions (YOI). By his own admission, his offending behaviour was usually linked to criminal activity on the estate where he lived and the accompanying misuse of drugs. His last resettlement plan contained a practical focus on developing skills such as cooking, washing, health care, and how he could look after himself.

When Jack was previously back in the community, Connexions helped him get onto some college courses in catering and plastering. His best memory of the resettlement experience was doing the plastering course. Unfortunately, Jack went back to the YOI before he was able to find a job in which could have made use of his new skills. Once again, his reoffending was due to particular situations that occurred on the estate where he lived. The Youth Offending Team (YOT) is now helping to arrange for him to meet with Army Careers. Jack sees the army as an escape route from life on the estate and a possible way to stop the cycle of reoffending.

Jack says that the Youth In Focus resettlement project has helped him move on and provided assistance to him with sorting his life out and getting a nice home. The team helped Jack develop job search skills. They were also able to help him out with any immediate problems that he might face. He found the support was useful and helpful. They organised visits to the gym for him where he could go boxing. Jack was on the Intensive Surveillance and Supervision Programme and this involved daily trips to the YOT offices to participate in a variety of different activities – spending up to two hours a day there.

Tagged with the theme:

Resettlement of young offenders: informing practice, improving outcomes