Making a Difference – Stirling Community Justice Partnership
Since October 2017 Stirling Community Enterprise (SCE) has been heavily involved in a fantastic partnership initiative to support people with criminal justice experience with their education, employability, health and wellbeing and to help them to improve their future job prospects. The project aims to deliver a targeted intervention that creates clear pathways for those with CJ experience into training and employment and to provide easy access to health, addictions and intervention support.
The ‘Stirling Community Justice Partnership’ is funded by, Scottish Government’s Employability Innovation and Integration Fund, SCE and Stirling Council and involves not only SCE but NHS Forth Valley, Forth Valley College, Addiction Support and Counselling Forth Valley and Stirling Council’s Criminal Justice Department. The project offers a team of highly experienced and dedicated front line staff who work together to create a “team” who support individuals with their own specific needs including, training and employability skill development, learning about how and what to disclose regarding their convictions, addictions support and access to Keep Well health surveillance all within a community setting.
The multi-agency team have been helping people achieve fantastic results with 121 people being supported to date. 100 of these people were assisted with 154 interventions in areas such as help with Universal Credit and ongoing changes to the welfare system, housing difficulties, financial matters and addiction concerns.
So far, the team have supported 78% of the clients into a positive destination with 23% of these people securing a job, 4% going to College, 6% getting involved in volunteering and 52% moving into training within Stirling’s Employability Pipeline Provider Network.
Agencies that work with local people are also feeling the benefits of the Justice Partnership approach and the staff have received fantastic testimonials highlighting this. Here is some of the feedback we have received:
“In all cases I can say that their attendance / participation during my appointments has been 100%, without your support my customers would not have taken up the volunteering opportunities. I would say that these young people have had a clearer vision and clearer goals with your support, without doubt they are all now nearer the labour market. I have also noticed an improved attitude towards Universal Credit and Job centre plus from my customers that you are supporting.” – from a Job Centre Plus Work Coach.
“I would never hesitate in referring any young person to Stirling Community Enterprise, and the partnership, the courses they offer and the support they provide is invaluable and without it, the young people I work with would be at a loss as I firmly believe there is no other service in Stirling that caters for the needs of the young people I work with.” – from a local Youth Justice Worker.
Most importantly the people accessing these services are reporting that the service is supporting them as individuals:
“I would just like to take this opportunity to properly thank you for the help and support you gave not only to me last year but my whole family. From meeting in May and the support and advice you give until my trial. Every step of the way you understood my situation and helped to prepare me mentally for what was possibly going to be a custodial sentence. Unfortunately, that was the outcome but I was prepared and survived it and I’m now using my experiences to build the foundations of retraining to work with people with similar experiences and journeys to mine. The aftercare support you gave to my husband was greatly appreciated. The work you do is invaluable, and you are a great ambassador for Stirling Community Enterprise.”
We are thrilled to see so many people access this service and put in the time and energy to improve their futures for themselves.
If you have a criminal conviction or you support someone who has and you want to speak to someone about training or employment opportunities please contact Stewart Macfarlane on firstname.lastname@example.org for a confidential chat.