Families & Criminal Justice

Families affected by imprisonment

160,000 children each year have a parent in prison.

At Spurgeons, our aim is to improve the lives of those children and their families who are affected by a parent being in prison. Our prisoner and family support services across England allow children to visit their loved ones in a friendly environment and our mentoring and support programmes give young people the chance to reduce negative behaviours and build a better future.

The impact of having a relative in prison

Having a parent in prison can be detrimental to a young person’s wellbeing and behaviour. The figures speak for themselves:

  • 65% of boys with a convicted parent go on to offend

  • 37% of prisoners have family members who had been convicted of a crime

  • 29% of prisoners experienced abuse as a child

  • 63% of prisoners had been suspended or temporarily excluded from school

In addition, children of prisoners are three times more likely to develop behavioural problems and twice as likely to show anti-social or delinquent behaviour.

Children seen as 'trouble-makers' may become isolated or excluded from mainstream schooling. When this happens the risk of them becoming involved in criminal activity grows. They face the challenges of drugs, bullying, abuse, poverty and family breakdown alone - sometimes because their own parents are in prison.

Spurgeons Makes a Difference

Our work supports those children who have a parent in prison and helps young offenders to break the cycle of criminal activity that could lead to reoffending.

We offer a wide range of support for those affected by a family member in prison, including:

  • Visits centre service

  • Visits play area

  • Family engagement

  • Family days

  • One-to-one support and signposting

father and son

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5 hours ago


There are at least 60 county line drugs operations in Birmingham. Because boys are more likely to be targeted by police, gangs are now increasingly targeting girls and young women to transport weapons.

The Spurgeons BeLeave Project was set up in 2017. It helps girls aged 8 - 18 who are in danger of such criminal exploitation to recognise risks and make positive choices.

Last year we had the opportunity to film Nicky's story... hear Nicky in her own words discuss how the BeLeave project helped her to make new friends and find the confidence to try new things.

Read more about our BeLeave project here: spurgeons.org/impact-report-2020/

#BELEAVE #girlsingangs #ImpactReport
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1 day ago


''Life has thrown so much at these young people, but they are remarkably resilient and capable, and have so much potential.'' - Jackie Benton who manages the Young Carers programme in Birmingham.

Census data identifies 173,000 young carers in the UK (2016), though BBC research projects up to 700,000, or 3 times as many, have caring needs that are yet to be identified.

These young people are caring for a family member with an illness or disability. They have to grow up too fast - the need to balance their caring responsibilities with school leaves them little time to have fun with friends.

Spurgeons supports around 2,000 young people who have a caring role through our Birmingham Young Carers Unite and Wolverhampton Young Carers services. Find out more about our work in our latest Impact Report: spurgeons.org/impact-report-2020/

#ImpactReport #childrenscharity #youngcarers #birmingham #wolverhampton
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4 days ago


Praying with all of those working in prisons, including our Spurgeons colleagues and volunteers across our Family Support and Visiting services. 🙏🧡

Find out more: www.spurgeons.org/prisons-week

#PrisonsWeek Prisons Week
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4 days ago


Spurgeons is a proud sponsor of Prisons Week. Hear Spurgeons CEO Ross Hendry talk about the importance of prayer and our work in prisons in the video below.

Find out more: spurgeons.org/prisons-week
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