Aim

We will be cycling across Dorset and Hampshire to raise funds for Footprints and to raise awareness of the distances separating prisoners from their families.

The riders will be led by Stuart Dearborn, the Dorset Coordinator for Footprints.

 

Why?

In 2013 the government announced that prisoners would be moved to a resettlement prison local to their home for the last three months of their sentence.

Eight years later, this is still not happening. Offenders are often imprisoned far from their homes, making it difficult to maintain relationships with families, despite clear evidence that these relationships are vital in reducing reoffending.

For example, in order to visit, the families of prisoners serving in Winchester or on the Isle of Wight will have to travel by a very limited public transport system which can take many hours. For the families of women prisoners, the journey is even longer, as female offenders are usually held in Bronzefield, near Heathrow, or Eastwood Park, near Bristol.

Whilst prisoners are provided with a travel ticket on the day of release, they are often targeted by drug dealers near the prison or they fall to the temptation of off-licences, meaning that before they have even returned home they are back in an addictive pathway leading to reoffending.

 

How Footprints helps

Footprints is ideally placed to help people break that cycle. We work across Dorset and Hampshire and can provide mentors or staff to engage with people during their sentence, which may continue for perhaps 3-12 months after they are released. We can also help by meeting people at the prison gates on the day of release, which is often a significant trauma in itself.

 

Take part

To take part in the ride or to help us raise awareness or funds, please contact Caroline Stevens by emailing [email protected] or phone 07979855843

You can do the whole ride or just a small part. We will be setting off from Portland (8 am) and from Winchester (1.30pm). Riders will meet at the end in the New Forest for a celebration.