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It took prison to help get my gambling addiction under control

Gambling, like alcohol, is a legal vice; for most people, it doesn’t cause a problem. However, for some, gambling can become a destructive addiction that destroys their lives. That’s the experience that Max had.    For the last 8 years of my life I have suffered with

My life behind bars – from prisoner to bar owner

David Gauke has made it clear that he doesn’t believe that prison sentences of less than 12 months rehabilitate individuals and should only be used as a last resort. Malcolm is certain that despite having served lots of short sentences, he only started to turn his life

Prison to parenthood

With the forthcoming launch of his Prison to Parenthood project, David explains how his own experiences with alcohol and the family court led him to set up this new pilot scheme.   2018 was the strangest year I’ve known. It began in a prison cell with all

Although prison affected my mental health, I want to stay part of the criminal justice system

Toni was determined that on her release from prison she was going to turn her back on the criminal justice system. However, as she later discovered, the impact of her prison sentence meant that she’d go on to use her experiences in a much more positive way. 

Learning to read in prison has opened so many doors!

Margaret had never told anybody that she couldn’t read or write. However, the need to complete courses as part of her sentence plan made her realise that she needed to get some help to improve her literacy skills.      I must have been about 6 years

I was told that my historic convictions would stop me working in a prison, but is that really the case?

Like many people who’ve had personal experience of the criminal justice system, Victoria wanted to help others who found themselves in a similar situation to the one she’d been in. Sadly, she discovered that the Prison Service were more likely to consider her historic convictions rather than

A clear cut career choice – training to become a barber whilst in prison

Despite receiving many convictions as a young man, it wasn’t until Terry received a 12 year sentence for armed robbery that he made the decision to turn his life around. For the first time, he was given opportunities, advice and support that he’d never been given before

Employment embargo – Why does the prison think employers are ‘unsuitable’ and refuse to let me work?

Having worked his way through the prison system, Mo is struggling to understand why the prison service continues to refuse him permission to work for certain employers without explaining their reasons why.    During the time I’ve spent in prison, I’ve had a variety of ‘jobs’ –

Could you help somebody cope with prison life? Paid work opportunity – deadline 30th June

The Samaritans are looking to recruit some extraordinary people to run workshops in two London prisons. Have you got what it takes? Find out more below. But be quick – deadline 30th June 2017.  Many people go into prison not knowing what to expect. That’s why the

Writing competition open to former prisoners

The Prison Reform Trust have just launched their 2017 writing competition. The competition is open to prisoners, prisoners’ families and friends, and to former prisoners. There are three categories: A comment piece A short story A lyric/rap. With the prison and probation service at a crossroads, this

From prisoner to probation officer – securing a job as a probation officer with a criminal record

Back in 2005 when I was about 16 years old my mum made the brave decision to move me and my younger brother from London to Wales. Although I’d never got into any serious trouble, I’d been hanging around with the ‘wrong-crowd’ and had started to get

Staying positive and being resilient – my journey from prison to normality

Having a little bit of time on my hands, I just wanted to share my experiences of being out in the real world. It’s been eight months since my release from prison after serving four years of an eight year sentence for conspiracy to defraud. From the