UR4Driving is a new venture which aims to reduce recidivism, improve the life/social skills and transform the employability of ex-offenders who would otherwise be unable to find legitimate work on account of their criminal records.
At least 5 years but hopefully will continue after that.
Charity information: The Upper Room (St Saviour's )
UR4Driving is a new venture in collaboration with the Probation Services and a local Community Transport Project. It aims to reduce recidivism, improve the life/social skills and transform the employability of ex-offenders, who would otherwise be unable to find legitimate work on account of their criminal records.
Ex-offenders earn their driving lessons by completing 80 hours of voluntary work. This structures their day, improves their reliability and ability to work in a team. Once they have their Car or Motorbike Licence we help them find work e.g. CV preparation, interview techniques, basic IT skills. UR4Driving works because ex-offenders want to drive. The voluntary work resocialises them. A job is key in sustaining housing and preventing homelessness. Driving jobs are still open to ex-offenders.
To improve the life skills of 30 ex-offenders pa. (punctuality, reliability and teamwork).
Activities» Recruit 30 suitable candidates pa from Feltham, Wormwood Scrubs or Probation Officers. Sign them up to the Code of Conduct, appoint mentors.
» Begin the 80 hours of voluntary work. Apply for Provisional Driving Licence, open email address and commence learning Driving Theory on- line.
» Support candidates, monitor emotional development via the ‘Outcomes Star’ method and then after 80 hours, formally evaluate their personal conduct.
Success will be an improvement in their timekeeping, as demonstrated by their timesheets and Mentors. Success will also be evidenced through the "Outcomes Star" .
To teach the ex offenders to drive, after they have completed 80 hours of voluntary work.
Activities» Refer candidates to Driving School to schedule their lessons.
» Monitor their progress and ascertain when they are ready to take practical road test.
» Book practical road test. Rebook if they are unsuccessful first time round.
Success will be 30 ex-offenders achieving a Car or Motorbike Licence.
Improve the employability of the ex-offenders by referring them to UR4Jobs for job preparation.
Activities» Meet with candidates and refer them to UR4Jobs.
» UR4Jobs will deliver job preparation training e.g. compiling a CV, interview techniques etc.
Success will be 30 ex-offenders compiling a CV, improving their interview techniques and going on to apply for jobs.
To reduce recidivism by helping successful candidates find suitable work via UR4Jobs.
Activities» UR4Jobs & UR4Driving will seek out legitimate driving jobs.
» Track successful candidates' future progress for 2 years via Probation Officers (where possible).
» Provide employment advice and support to them if required.
Success will be a reduction in re-offending of 30 ex-offenders, compared to national offending rates, by finding work for 30 ex-offenders.
UR4Driving reduces the risk of ex-offenders turning to immediate recidivism immediately after release and subsequently it offers them a chance to ‘go straight’ for life and become integrated citizens. It is a new approach to an intractable and politically difficult problem but crime spawns more crime and each prevented crime saves another chain of miserable events. UR4Driving is new and its longer term impact can only be measured over the years to come but it can be replicated further afield.
UR4Driving is a low security project and the Probation Officers are required to submit detailed risk assessments in order to help pre-select suitable candidates. On site they have close mentoring, holistic support and access to further referrals. They also have to adhere to our Code of Conduct. Candidates will be refused lessons if they are suspected of substance misuse. We anticipate a 50% drop-out rate during Phase 1 so we have budgeted for 60 in Phase 1 and 30 in Phase 2.
We will submit timely monitoring reports to funders including all achievements during the reporting period as well as problems faced/overcome. All relevant statistics will be included regarding the ex-offenders' progress as well as data from the "Outcomes Star" which is used to track soft outcomes.
Budget - Project Cost: £120,716Loading graph....
Amount Heading Description £32,040 Project Manager Full time. £12,028 Admin/Van Driver 10 hours per week & 15 hours respectively. £20,448 Training costs 25 Driving Lessons for 30 + PAT/MEEP/Midas & Resources. £7,800 Travel Costs Travel costs for voluntary work. £10,950 Prov, Test Fees 60 Provisional Licences, 30 x test fees. £10,400 Vehicle Running costs for Foodbank (voluntary work) £27,050 Overheads Ops Dir/Admin/Bookkeeper/Fundraiser x 1/3 & Rent.
Current Funding / Pledges
Source Amount Big Lottery Fund £256,854 Guaranteed Esmee Fairbairn Foundation £75,000 Guaranteed Wates Foundation £24,000 Guaranteed Tudor Trust £20,000 Guaranteed
UR4Driving is in Hammersmith in West London but the council is selling the building and it will have to move this year. Hammersmith & Fulham has pockets of extreme wealth and poverty but it has excellent transport links and a culturally varied population. Both Feltham and Wormwood Scrubs are nearby and probation officers have heavy caseloads of ex-offenders for rehabilitation programmes. UR4Driving is proving its worth and, if successful, it will be rolled out as an ethical franchise.
The primary beneficiaries are the 30 disadvantaged ex-offenders with low skills who are released from a vicious circuit of crime, imprisonment and further crime. The secondary beneficiaries are the Probation Officers who are long on problems, short of choices and need good rehabilitation projects. The tertiary beneficiaries are the ex-offenders’ families who can take pride in their errant children and the final beneficiary is the broader community which is spared some of the cost of crime.
UR4Meals is an established (1990) front line charity in Shepherds Bush and around 25% of its beneficiaries are ex-offenders. They are fed, further referred, offered volunteer opportunities and befriended. The details of their disempowerment were explored at first hand and the concept of UR4Driving was born at first hand. It was launched on the back of a 20 year reputation but it was designed by the ex-offenders, for the ex-offenders and it relies on their work as drivers and mentors.
Read more about the Charity running this project.
Bruce is the Project Manager responsible for the Admin & Van Driver plus day to day running of the project and ensuring it is on budget.
He/she will be the line manager to the Project Manager and will oversee the project with particular attention to monitoring and its long term impact.