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Some feedback from lads at Swinfen Hall YOI…

We got some great feedback from lads at Swinfen Hall Young Offenders Institution. Particularly good to hear this bearing in mind that, of the 14 who did the project, all but one were considered by the prison to be “difficult” or “vulnerable” (specifically: self-harming, on violence reduction programmes, and/or hard-to-engage):

“Gives you something to focus on; something I can talk to my probation officer about”

“Helps keep you straight – you can put your energy into this instead of other stuff“

“Learned how to speak with people and to communicate”

“It’s very therapeutic, relaxing”

“I normally spend 23 hours on the wing. I do in cell education. I don’t come out, I get very stressed. This has helped because I’ve been doing something constructive – I’ve been learning new skills and about a new culture; it’s helped me keep my stress levels down.”

“Gave me a sense of pride, worth – you can’t feel proud of much in prison; it’s an alive feeling; I’ve felt it a lot this week“

“When you get annoyed frustrated [you] have to listen and respect people.”

“Given me insight into my life – you can’t do this on your own. There’s lots you can’t do on your own – you need help and support”

“On your own, you just make a tinkle with a metallic instrument; with the group with a shared goal you can get something right and create something quite magical.”

“This is what life is about – sharing and helping; it’s really good”

“Was great today – I love it! Learning a lot about myself. Sometimes I lack confidence so this has brought out a different part of me.”



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Photography by Toby Madden/The Independent, Osman Deen/South London Press, Camilla Panufnik, Elspeth Van Der Hole, GDA Design, Gigi Chiying Lam, G. Bland, Alan Bryden, Mark Carlin, Rachel Cherry, Francois Boutemy, Andy Hollingworth, Rebaz Yassin, and Guy Smallman.

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