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05th Oct 2019

Stopping reoffending by teaching prisoners to referee

Wayne Farry

Reoffending rates in the UK are high

According to British government statistics, 67 percent – more than two thirds – of adult male prisoners will reoffend within the first year of their release from prison.

That has been partly attributed to the fact that 83 percent of those people will leave prison without a job to go to.

One such organisation looking to cut these reoffending rates is The Twinning Project. Supported by the HM Prison and Probation Service, as well as a number of footballing bodies including the Premier League, the project seeks to reduce reoffending rates by teaching prisoners how to referee football matches.

It is hoped that the skills learned during these sessions will give prisoners not only the chance of acquiring employment upon their release, but also the social skills needed to help them in society going forward.

JOE travelled to HMP Lancaster Farms, where the project hosed a training session to speak to some participants, CEO of the Twinning Project Hilton Freund, as well as Daniel Meeson, the FA’s Referee Development Manager and experienced Premier League referee Anthony Taylor, who has experience working as a prison office, to find out more about how prisoners will benefit in the long-term from the coaching sessions.