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Thirteen secures funding to extend support for ex-offenders

A service which helps ex-offenders in the Tees Valley, Durham and Darlington to rebuild their lives has received a £1.1mn funding boost.
Thirteen business growth team L-R Kendra Hunt, Karen Kenmare, Ali Riley, Lianne Steed

Housing specialist Thirteen secured the funding from the Achieving Real Change in Communities (ARCC) board to continue its Future Steps service, which is delivered in partnership with The Wise Group and A Way Out.

Future Steps supports adults at risk of offending or re-offending to settle back into the community by helping them find and maintain the right accommodation, access support and advice and move closer to employment.

Between February 2022 and November 2023, the Future Steps team engaged with 188 people and helped to claim £297,000 of additional income for customers, including backdated benefits payments and grants for appliances.

While receiving support from Future Steps, over 93% of people did not receive a long-term custodial sentence, and only 6.38% of cases had to be closed due to a breach of licence and/or returning to prison.

Of the people that the service supported, 73% sustained their tenancy for over three months.

The additional funding was secured by Thirteen’s Business Growth team, which creates bids for funding and new contracts that will help to develop housing and support services in Thirteen’s operating areas.

Chris Joynes, Director of Thirteen Plus, said: “Since introducing Future Steps in 2022, we have exceeded our targets for engaging with ex-offenders and supporting them to sustain their tenancies, and we recognise the difference that this kind of service can make to people’s lives.

“Securing additional funding for Future Steps is a proud moment for Thirteen, as it means we can continue to build on the success of the service alongside our partners, and help more ex-offenders to lead more stable, independent lives.

“I would like to say a big thank you to all of the team at Thirteen, The Wise Group and A Way Out for their hard work and dedication, and I look forward to seeing what the service can achieve in the future.”

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