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The role of sport in promoting desistance from crime: An evaluation of the 2nd Chance project rugby and football academies at Portland young Offender institution

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The 2nd Chance Project uses sport and a supportive multi agency environment to engage high risk young people, create pathways for personal and social development, and raise aspiration. They offer realistic routes into mainstream education, training and employment on release from custody. For many years, sport has been used in this environment, without fully evidencing how effective it is at addressing the wider resettlement agenda. Having this project independently evaluated fully validates the impact of the project, the overall results and the potential of future contributions from the 2nd Chance Project. Furthermore, the cost benefit identified by the project demonstrates a high financial and social return on investment which provides further evidence for policymakers considering how they should invest in programmes to tackle youth reoffending nationally.

 

  • A total of 81 young male adult offenders at HMP YOI Portland participated over a two year period.
  • Participants were representative of the male young adult prisoner population according to offence category and risk
    of reoffending.
  • Of the fifty participants who have been released over the past 18 months, nine have reoffended or been recalled to prison, representing an 18% reconviction rate (compared to a prison average of 48% after one year).
  • Statistically significant improvements were observed in established measures of conflict resolution, aggression, impulsivity, and attitudes towards offending following participation.
  • Qualitative interviews and testimonies illustrate the positive impact of participation on behaviour within the prison, staff-prisoner relationships and the resettlement opportunities of prisoners in managing the transition from custody to community.
  • The evaluation findings have verified that the project has facilitated a unique opportunity for delivery staff and community partners to engage with those prisoners who can be especially hard-to-reach. The initiative has enabled offenders and delivery staff to develop positive support and mentoring relationships, and has motivated individuals to take responsibility for their actions, and inspired them to generate positive aspirations for the future.
  • Despite initially being of the opinion that the resettlement component of the academy would merely replicate existing provision, members of prison staff have found the expertise of 2nd Chance an indispensable aspect of their work.
  • In providing specialist help that is tailored to an individual’s complex needs, the through-the-gate involvement of 2nd Chance has enabled offenders to maintain positive support relationships across the critical transition from custody to community.

  

sportdevelopment.org.uk

 

 

 editors comments   

Editor's comments - [  More than half of all crime is committed by people who have previously been through the Criminal Justice System (Home Office, 2006) and reoffending rates within the young adult prisoner population are among the highest. Prison therefore presents a critical opportunity to engage with offenders through interventions and programming. Previous research has identified a clear need for specialist delivery and carefully planned methods of motivating offenders to make positive life changes, and sport presents a unique opportunity to engage with even the most challenging of young people caught up in a cycle of offending and imprisonment.

This report summarises the evaluation findings of the 2nd Chance Project football and rugby academy, a two year initiative at HMP YOI Portland which uses sport as a way of engaging with young adult male prisoners in identifying and meeting resettlement needs and facilitating the transition from custody to community. The report is made up of eight key sections: Chapter 1 provides a contextual overview of the role of sport as a crime prevention initiative; Chapter 2 outlines the background to and delivery of the sports academies at Portland Young Offenders Institution; Chapter 3 introduces the evaluation process. Chapters 4-5 present the qualitative and quantitative research findings, and Chapter 6 is dedicated to a discussion of the key results. Chapter 7 explores the key  recommendations generated by the research, and Chapter 8 summarises the suggested future research directions. The report concludes with a series of illustrative case studies presented in Chapter 9.  ]  Reference this?Meek, R. (2012). This page title in italics. Retrieved date, from In the text: Meek (2012)

 

APA reference for this document

 

Reference :  Meek, R. (2012). The role of sport in promoting desistance from crime: An evaluation of the 2nd Chance project rugby and football academies at Portland young Offender institution. Southampton: University of Southampton

 

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 29 August 2012 10:18