THE FOOTPRINTS PROJECT
Footprints clients/mentees are men and women returning to our geographical area and seeking help in order to reduce the risk of their re-offending.
Many have been abused, have mental and physical illnesses, have a history of living in care or leaving school early, have experienced family problems/rejection, suffered from drug/alcohol addiction, repeatedly been in prison, and are fearful about returning to a world which may be dysfunctional or hostile.
Some will be homeless or living in supported housing, and unfortunately the great majority will be unemployed/untrained, and lacking academic qualifications.
Some clients need a great deal of support to help them realise that change is possible – even for them. Their confidence and self-esteem is often extremely low.
Kevin, has been a heroin addict for 10 years and in and out of prison during that time on a frequent basis. He left prison to live in supported housing. Unfortunately he lapsed once and was therefore evicted from his accommodation. Footprints helped him to find alternative housing and have supported him on a regular basis with his lapses – now hopefully and thankfully historical; he attends college and is about to share a flat of his own. He had a poor relationship with his family and is working on re-establishing some contact, thereby enabling himself to move on mentally, emotionally and physically. He had has also spoken about his experiences publicly and the support that he has had from his mentor and the staff at Footprints.
Emma, in her thirties is at the end of an eight-year sentence and on licence in the community, having been recalled after a relapse. She was released - again on licence. She has been in hostel accommodation and has been happily engaging with therapeutic groups and her probation officer. She meets with her mentor at regular intervals to discuss future plans and has freely talked about her past. Her crimes include burglary, theft, robbery, and GBH. She has made many positive decisions since her release including, with help from her mentor, working as a volunteer, and goes to a church where she is welcomed. Given her past record, she has made an amazing effort to change her behaviour, to avoid drugs, and is now hoping to get some qualifications in order to find a job in the caring profession.