Reflecting on the first month of our campaign
We made our first step a month ago, stepping into unknown as we had no idea how the Campaign would actually be perceived and take up by prisoners, prison leavers and families. They have been speaking to us during this pandemic, mostly asking questions and seeking support in finding answers. It was this quest for recording their stories that led us into this campaign, a different way of engaging with people we have always worked with. Will it work? How? We did not have all the answers either. But a month later, we are glad we made that move.
In just a month, the campaign team has received 71 requests and stories from prisoners, prison leavers and families detailing the conditions in which they live, the impact on their physical and mental health and their hopes for future. We are overwhelmed that our approach has worked. These are not just the numbers to count for us, these number also illustrates the trust and responsibility given to us by our communities during these difficult times. We intend to exercise this with care and
“We are helpless and hopeless behind these locked doors" wrote John, a serving prisoner, last week. It is clear that what started as a safe space for sharing stories has now become a beacon for providing support and hope and that’s where we are heading to in the next six months.