Thousands of offenders will be diverted away from crime by the expansion of a kitchen training scheme in prisons across England and Wales.
Boosting access to work and safe accommodation for prison leavers will also help build back safer communities by cutting crime and reducing reoffending, which costs the taxpayer £18 billion each year.
Prisons Minister Lucy Frazer MP, said: “This expansion of the catering programme is testament to the thousands of training and job opportunities it has provided for offenders over the years. Cutting reoffending and its vast cost to society is a priority for this government.
“Training within prison leads to employment on release, which we know has such a positive impact on ex-offenders, their families and communities, and ultimately reduces crime.”
The Clink’s training scheme is proven to significantly cut rates of reoffending, with offenders 32% less likely to go on to commit further crimes compared to those who did not receive training.
This success means for every £1 invested, The Clink Charity is likely to generate at least £4.80 back to the prison service, government and society in reduced reoffending rates.
The expansion to more prisons marks a new era for the partnership with HMPPS, which over a decade has helped more than 2,500 ex-offenders find employment.
The scheme will be funded entirely by The Clink through generous donations from many organisations and supporters.
Finlay T K Scott, Chairman of The Clink Charity said: “Reducing crime and improving all of our lives is at the heart of what The Clink does. This latest initiative in partnership with HMPPS underlines the tremendous impact The Clink program has had over the last 10 years.
“We will build upon the success of our innovative integrated program and roll it out across the prison estate. This platform will dramatically increase the number of students we are able to rehabilitate with the subsequent impact upon reoffending figures.”