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Sussex Pathways September Newsletter

Issue 6

September 2020

Welcome to our September edition. Here you will find a round-up of our month, including key updates on our work, feedback from people that we work with, and what to expect in the coming months.

Good news

Let’s get this month’s newsletter started with a really good news story, and then scroll down to some interesting reading, facts, sad stories and last but not least we have put our Chair Margaret Carey in the hot seat.

One of our ex-service users has recorded an interview with the BBC for prison radio. Sussex Pathways put him forward for this opportunity after we were approached by a partner agency asking if we were working with anybody who may be interested in ‘telling their story’ to empower current inmates. Jason was interviewed last week, and this recording will be being aired in prisons across the country. Jason has turned his life around since his prison sentence; he is maintaining his recovery, has just secured some paid work alongside volunteering, and is considering joining in the 10k to help raise funds for Sussex Pathways and Knight Support. 😊

Prison news

Some reading material to occupy your time https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/hm-prison-and-probation-service-covid-19-statistics

Other News

I share this link with great sadness, but felt it needed to be shared and read, so that we are aware of what is going on in our surroundings ☹

· https://theconversation.com/children-transitioning-from-care-to-adult-life-are-being-badly-let-down-and-falling-prey-to-criminal-gangs-145939


Across the UK, thousands of children are living in unregulated accommodations, designed to help them transition from living in care to an independent life as adults. But a lack of scrutiny means many children under 18 and in the system are badly let down. A new report from the Children’s Commissioner’s Office explores a number of systemic failures that need urgent attention.


Some areas of the system that have come in for criticism include children that are placed in these types of location while too young (age 14 or 15) or with very high support needs. The type of location can vary greatly, with some children placed in flats while others are placed in caravans or even tents.


One of the most troubling aspects of unregulated accommodations is that they are unregulated. Unlike registered children’s homes, which are inspected by Ofsted to assess the quality of care for children, unregistered accommodations should be inspected by councils. Yet as the report suggests, because of high demands and emergency needs for placements, providers can’t always be properly scrutinised despite being responsible for vulnerable children. While some providers offer a high level of support, others are abusing the system at the expense of the children.


The report found that providers are paid between £1,700 to £9,000 per week per child. This is due to different arrangements in different councils as well as a variety of services these placements claim to offer children. As 73% of providers are private, children can become a lucrative business.


Against this background, criminal organisations use unregulated accommodation to exploit the children (sexually or by recruiting them as drug mules, for example), and so profit even further from the children’s vulnerability and lack of scrutiny.

CJA discusses COVID-19 good practice and recovery in two new reports

12 August 2020

The CJA has published two new reports focusing on challenges and good practice across the criminal justice system during the pandemic, and what is needed to rebuild a better criminal justice system in the aftermath.


The first report, Routes to Recovery, draws on discussions with CJA members in virtual meetings in June and July. The report highlights challenges and good practice during COVID-19 across policing, courts, prisons, probation and resettlement, victims’ services, mental health and drug and alcohol services. The report also provides recommendations for policy makers, highlighting how they can build a better criminal justice system following the pandemic.


The second report, Responding Restoratively to COVID-19, focuses on how restorative approaches have provided a unique and effective response to the unprecedented challenges and tensions caused by COVID-19. The report also explores how restorative approaches could be used to address the harms and trauma caused by the pandemic, and to build a better criminal justice system and a safer and more cohesive, resilient society.

This report is the first in our Responding Restoratively series, which will showcase restorative practice and approaches and the potential for a more restorative criminal justice system.

Thank you to all the members and experts who contributed to these reports.

Resources:

From the Sussex PCC


This week we launched new, dedicated social media channels for REBOOT to raise awareness of this unique, early intervention programme that has helped 1,099 young people in Sussex since 2019.


Sussex Police is successfully working with the NHS Partnership Trust, Youth Offending Service and local charities to deliver this programme. It has a five-stage referral process that engages young people in activities of interest to them, and directs them away from negative behaviour they may be displaying within their community. We invest in young people’s futures, with one offer being a dedicated youth coach who works with them to increase their self-esteem and confidence.


Callum (name has been changed) aged 13 from West Sussex, was referred to REBOOT after being identified as having several risk factors, which included smoking and buying cannabis, exclusions from school and ‘hanging out’ with a negative peer group.

Watch this video to hear how he has turned his life around for the better working with his Youth Coach Paul: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZLit825cRqo

To find out more about the REBOOT programme visit my website here and make sure to follow @RebootSussex on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.


Katy Bourne OBE

Sussex Police & Crime Commissioner

Restorative Justice

There is still no movement on RJ in the prisons due to Covid-19. However Susie is now back in the Prison office and will be able to answer your queries around Residents and RJ.

Some interesting reading on remote working in RJ from the RJC:


Pathways to Change

PTC is stronger by the day. September has seen 12 active cases, with another 12 referrals, including a referral from Brixton Prison. We now have two groups running in the community: our PTC group and our new Thriving Inside/Outside group. These are run on a Thursday and if anyone would like to go along and see what happens in them, please contact Nigel and he will happily arrange this for you.


We are now on our 4th week of the two new Community groups, Pathways to Change and Thriving Inside Outside, and they are really becoming a great addition to our work. The pandemic has unapologetically caused every workplace to re- evaluate and discover how to adapt to this new way of working and for us this has been a great benefit. We have been given the time and space to focus on how we can place ourselves within the community and become more engaged with the agencies and client base available to us.


We have great foundation building to the groups, and the clients who attend are very engaging and work well, no matter the numbers which attend. Numbers do fluctuate, as you would expect with any new group; however this never affects the richness of the group and the clients always reflect positively upon the issues addressed and discussed within them.

Lamplight


With the development of the Pathways to Change Group programme in the community we needed to find a way of undertaking and assessing the areas that we needed to focus on for each participant. We started to draw up a questionnaire covering the areas of work in the programme asking individuals if these were issues that they identified the need to concentrate on. On looking at Lamplight we found clients’ self-assessments for how they were progressing and with a slight modification we have enabled these to become the pre-group assessments. Regular attendance is then reported on Lamplight after each session, and we are able to monitor on a monthly basis the progress that is being made and also to develop  self-assessments by the participants to evidence the growth and the impact of the Pathways to Change group. A similar process can also be used for those clients who are involved in the Thrive Inside / Outside group. We are now able to maximise the evidence of the work we deliver with individuals including their own self-assessment.

Events

Calling All Runners and Sponsors - Support the homeless in Brighton

Sussex Pathways and its friends are planning to run the 10k on April 18th 2021 in Brighton.

We want to to raise money for Brighton Homeless charity Knight Support, and for the Sussex Pathways hardship fund which provides small but vital help to the folk we work with, especially at the critical point of release from prison.

The inspiration for our participation in this event came from one of our service users Haydn. He wanted to run to raise money himself to directly help the street homeless in Brighton. Sadly, Haydn died before he was able to fulfil this wish.

If you or your friends / relatives would like to run, please register at https://2021.brightonmarathonweekend.co.uk/events/bm10k/enter/, and email andrewmt@sussexpathways.org.uk to let us know that you have entered.

If you aspire to run the full marathon, there is a waiting list at https://2021.brightonmarathonweekend.co.uk/enter-2021/ as the 2020 event did not take place so many people have their entries carried over.

If you want to run a half-marathon (or if 18th April is not convenient for you), there is a quite separate event which some of our folk plan to join on 28th Feb 2021 at https://www.brightonhalfmarathon.com/. Again, let us know if you have entered that.

Our fundraising page on Virgin Money can be found here. Please follow the "Start Fundraising" button to set up your own fund raising efforts so you can ask your friends, family, neighbours, colleagues etc to sponsor you. There are two separate just giving pages on Virgin, 1 for the 10k and 1 for the half marathon.

Do let me know if you have any questions.

Best wishes,

Andrew

Andrew Milton-Thompson Volunteer Sussex Pathways 07833 295576 andrewmt@sussexpathways.org.uk

andrew.milton-thompson@sussexpathways.cjsm.net

News & Media

Sussex Pathways Website is now up and running and proving to be successful already Please do visit it and click on the links. A huge thank you to Karren who has shed blood, sweat and tears over recreating this website, and I think it has been worth the trauma 😊

Trustees

Welcome to two new trustees, Jane Gould and Jessie Stanbrook. We will get to know them over the coming months, but this month is a sad farewell to Tim Moulds.

Sad News for us, good news for Tim!!

Tim Moulds is stepping down from our board of trustees. Tim helped to start the charity back in 2008. Now ‘over 70’ he plans to spend more time with the family – his wife Alison, their three children and six grandchildren! If you want to hear Tim being serious about Sussex Pathways and its work, our brilliant new website https://www.sussexpathways.org.uk/ has a video with Tim telling how it all began. If you want to see a less serious face, here he is with Alison.


Tim started life as an engineer, then an investor in engineering companies, and then (in his words) he got a proper job, working with Christian Aid, the international development charity. Nearly twenty years ago he moved into the criminal justice sector, and twelve years ago he helped to set up Sussex Pathways. As well as a trustee, he was a volunteer key worker, and says he found that experience “Extraordinary. People coming out of prison face so many challenges. They have such confidence that you, with easy access to the phone, the internet, the support of Sussex Pathways staff, can solve anything!

It’s a real responsibility. But a very rewarding job too. And you get all sorts of handy hints. One young man, in prison for several robberies of jewellery shops advised me ‘Always go in through the sky light, Tim.’” We will miss Tim greatly, but we do have two wonderful new trustees, and you can read about them in future newsletters.

Tributes to an amazing Man/Friend/Trustee

From Shirl – Many of you will know Tim Moulds as one of the first to be involved with Sussex Pathways with Pauline Prior, and has been with us for 12 years, Tim has been a Mentor and carried many cases over his time, and was also a Trustee. But more than this Tim has been a friend to so many in Sussex Pathways especially me, so this is really quiet personal to me, I am losing someone that has guided and steered me throughout my career with Sussex Pathways, he and I have laughed, he has listened to me rant and cry, he has never judged me, just put me back on track and sent me on my way. I for one will miss a good friend and confident in Tim, but I also wish him well in a much needed and overdue retirement, (Margaret don’t get any funny ideas about retiring) and to be able to spend more time with his lovely wife Alison and there family. Shirl

From Luke K – Wow...what can you say about Tim! In all honesty, I just regret not having more time to spend soaking up more of his wealth of experience and knowledge. It's really difficult to put words to paper regarding this, but below is my attempt.

Observing Tim's incredibly compassionate, conscientious, and reflective disposition has been an honour. Well, the superlatives one could assign to Tim are endless! However, what stands out for me is Tim's sense of humour. So often, especially in my early days as a Trustee, it would bring an ease to the anxiety of sitting with such esteemed individuals. But his witty comments, always timed to perfection, would also frequently defuse potentially challenging or hard topics for discussion. Tim, in one word: irreplaceable.

From Adrian T – Tim 'interviewed' me before I joined the Board. He introduced himself by saying he was 'a former merchant banker'. Since this was in 2009, that struck me as a very brave admission, but it certainly broke the ice!

I continue to find it impossible to imagine him in his former role. He is much too nice!

It has been an absolute pleasure to work with Tim. His commitment to, and passion for, Pathways have been immense. He steered the charity through some very difficult times. He will be sorely missed. VBW ADRIAN

From Andrew MT I remember very well Tim talking at the 10 year celebration about "the real heroes" of our work. Those we work with who face up to massive challenges to turn their lives around against huge odds. He reminded me how privileged we are to be accompanying them on their journeys.

Andrew

From MargaretTim is a star. No doubt about that. He was one of the founders of Sussex Pathways and has guided it with wisdom, compassion, integrity and good humour. When he spoke at the Ten Year Celebration in Lewes Prison, introducing a man who had been sentenced for burglary, and the young woman whose home he had violated, encouraging each of them to explain, in this large and powerful gathering, what Restorative Justice had achieved for them, the whole gathering was at first spellbound and then convinced. Thank you, Tim, from all of us, volunteers, staff, trustees and - most importantly – the men and women we were founded to support towards better lives after release. Margaret Carey

From Pauline – Tim has been pivotal to the success of Sussex Pathways since it was first floated as an idea in 2007. He has carried out a diverse series of roles over the years from its founding in 2008 to the current day.

Apart from his remarkable commitment to the business side of running the charity, he was also an outstanding volunteer mentor for several years, giving his support unstintingly.

On a personal and professional level, Tim’s contribution has been amazing and an inspiration to us all.

From Chris T – I first met Tim at Inside Out Trust back in 2004. He was always a thoughtful boss; the kind that takes an interest in everyone. I was impressed with his strategic thinking and loved his dry sense of humour. Above all, Tim had a passionate belief in the cause and wanted the very best outcome for prisoners.

Joining up again on the board at Sussex Pathways, I was not surprised that Tim was taking a lead a so many issues. He played a huge part in helping the organisation find a way out of some dark time. Hard to know what things will be like without Tim. He will be greatly missed.

From Tim L – Tim is a great source of knowledge of the justice system, and its perpetually changing objectives and foibles. He has been a considerable support to me when struggling to look at future forecasts and cash flows.

He has over the years developed a knack of summarising a situation in a succinct way. Somehow he manages to find potential solutions when the rest us are still struggling to understand were to start. A slick performer too, which was extremely well demonstrated by his presentations at the Sussex Pathways anniversary in Lewes Prison.

His talents have also been exploited in the village being a former Chair of governors for a considerable time and an enthusiastic organiser for Christian Aid.

He will be sorely missed by Sussex Pathways and Judy & I, wish Tim & Alison the very best for the future.

From Lucy – I was sad to hear that Tim is leaving, It will be such a loss to Sussex Pathways. Thank you for all of the support you have provided along the way, your commitment and dedication to the organisation has been so integral to its success. You will be missed very much. Lucy x


From Karren - I wish to express my heartfelt thanks to Tim for all of his help, support and encouragement over the years. He is truly one in a million and someone to look up to. I wish you and Alison all the very best for the future. You will be very much missed. Karren

Pathway to Sussex Pathways

The better we know and understand each other, the better we can work as a team. Each month our newsletter will profile a different member of the team at Sussex Pathways, spanning staff, trustees and volunteers. And this month is it our very own Chair of Trustees in the hot seat!

Name: Margaret Carey

I’ve spent nearly 30 years doing work that aims to improve the lives of marginalised people, initially in overseas development and then within the Criminal Justice System. As a small child in the ‘fifties, I was told about London children coming to Sussex for a short break from the ruined areas where they lived post-war and thinking how fortunate I was. I still feel fortunate, and I suppose that early memory affected how I feel about people who don’t have a good start in life.

Margaret age 4 years and as a Teenager.

The first charity I set up in 1990 was the Inside Out Trust which involved asking people in prison to refurbish unwanted items donated by you out there, to improve life chances of people in very much poorer countries, using the time and commitment of residents in our prisons to achieve this and training them in new skills which could help them after release. People in prisons were immediately enthusiastic and over the next few years, we set up hundreds of projects. Sex offenders in Lewes repaired spectacles which gave people in countries like Uganda and Sierra Leone good enough vision to earn a living; lifers in Full Sutton transcribed books into Braille for blind school children (and my husband Kevin); men in Wormwood Scrubs mended wheelchairs for disabled kids in India; women in Holloway made simple clothes for children so that they could go to school in Malawi. The list is endless. All that it needed was goodwill from prisons, the public and partner charities which could take the goods to needy communities. And, of course, good organisation! And amazing staff and volunteers. Pretty much like Sussex Pathways really! When the Inside Out Trust ceased operation, a very wonderful staff member, David Brown, set up another charity and asked if he could name it after me! Well, of course, who would say ‘no’ to that? The Margaret Carey Foundation is doing very well and dear David has just retired.

One thing led to another and I got involved in other charities within the sector including chairing the Board of the Restorative Justice Consortium (now Council) for six years. In 2007 I was part of the team that set up Circles UK to expand the work of circles of support and accountability in England and Wales. This was based on the Quaker initiative in Canada which works with released sex offenders within the community, providing them with structured support and monitoring which aims to allow them and their neighbours to live safely after release from sometimes very long periods of imprisonment. Fundraising for Sussex Pathways is a doddle compared with that, I assure you!

Alongside this, I served for seven years as an Independent Member of the Parole Board; and for nearly 25 years as a magistrate. So, at one time, I was sentencing people in the Magistrates Court, finding them constructive work to do whilst they were in prison, and then assessing their suitability for release at parole hearings. Possibly unique!

Outside the Criminal Justice System, I’ve served as a churchwarden in our parish church which involves being a trustee of several community charities; I sing alto in the church choir (we are just starting again, socially distanced, of course), possibly the only activity shared by people between the ages of 8 and 88! I am a trustee of our local Hurst Festival, of which I was a founder and which is now in its fifteenth year. I’m a member of a poetry group, write a column for our local paper, organise concerts, and altogether have a wonderfully varied life. I’ve always lived in Mid Sussex and can’t imagine being out of sight of the South Downs for very long. My husband, Kevin, is a social entrepreneur, preacher, writer, singer, and recently retired as chair of the Board of the RNIB, a charity on a somewhat larger scale than any of mine! We have two children, seven grandchildren and, so far, two great-grandchildren. My son lives in Australia and I’ve managed to visit him every year for more than 20 years.

It’s a huge privilege to chair Sussex Pathways. It is a remarkable charity with a highly skilled and committed team of staff and volunteers, supported by a multi-talented board of trustees. Thank you everyone for all that you do to make our work so effective. We really do change lives.

We all at Sussex Pathways want to say a huge thank you to Margaret for being our Chair and doing such a good job.

Stay safe from all at Sussex Pathways.

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