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Entrepreneurial Spirit at Five Prisons

share November 27, 2023Posted by: Jenna

PeoplePlus has just completed its fifth successful self-employment programme for people in prison, this time taking place at HMP Holme House. PeoplePlus delivers education in 22 prisons across the country, and we are proud to be able to offer our 30 year experience in self-employment advice and expertise into the prison population we work with.

We have so far completed the self-employment programmes in HMP Drake Hall, where the female prisoners were given expert advice in starting up their own business in the hair and beauty industry, HMP Littlehey where the support was specific to motor mechanics, and HMPs North Sea Camp, Wealstun and most recently Holme House, where the support was kept more general and didn’t focus on a specific trade.

Taking place over a week, the prisoners learnt about business planning, cashflow, marketing and bookkeeping, taught by one of our experienced Business Advisors. The prisoners were also able to develop their own business ideas and talk these through with our Advisors. HMP Holme House also enabled the prisoners to present their ideas to a panel of ‘judges’ on the final day of the programme, whilst some of the other prisons offered presentation ceremonies with the Governors.

Across the five prisons a number of HMP staff commented on how focused and calm the prisoners were when passing the classroom and overall they have been very impressed with the high levels of engagement and interest throughout the sessions. All of the prisoners who took part commented on how much they’d enjoyed the sessions and benefitted from the Advisors’ experience and learning. One of the key things they observed was the knowledge of the Advisors and their ability to deliver the learning in a way that all the prisoners could clearly understand and articulate, despite having learners of vast ability.

Some feedback from the prisoners attending the workshops has been:

“Mark is a wonderful teacher, very unique and he taught us on a genuine and real level.”

“The course was very interactive and it opened my eyes to what should be common knowledge”.

The prisoners at HMP Drake Hall enjoyed their tuition so much, they bought Business Advisor Hasina a thank you card, did her hair and nails for her on the last day and bought her a make- up palette with their own money that they’d earnt in the prison.

Jess Tile – Prison Employment Lead HMP Wealstun commented:

“The department is still buzzing about this, we have never had a group of prisoners more committed and engaged with something, and I genuinely believe this is just the start for them. The content, the delivery, and most importantly the offer of help upon release was top notch. They all went back to the wings, told their mates how good it was, and now we have several requests in to run it again!”

And after the most recent initiative at HMP Holme House, Melanie Clements - Head of Education, Skills and Work said “An excellent course – we can’t wait for the next one!”

PeoplePlus is keen to hear from any more prisons who would like to run a self-employment initiative in their prison. Simply email [email protected] to discover how.

share November 27, 2023Posted by: Jenna

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