15 July 2020
Rebecca Perry, the policy and programme manager at The National Literacy Trust (NLT), speaks with Rod Clark, Chief Executive of The Prisoners Education Trust about NLT’s work within the criminal justice system.Listen to the Webinar with Rebecca Perry here.
Despite being relatively new to the criminal justice space, The National literacy Trust has already had a major impact on the lives of prisoners across the country. Rebecca tells us about the highly successful “Books Unlocked” scheme, initiated in 2012, which involves providing prisons with books that have won or have been nominated for the Booker Prize. The programme provides prison learners in 70 prisons with the chance to develop their literacy skills and discover, or potentially rediscover, a passion for reading.
The National Literacy Trust has since worked with prison learners in numerous, creative ways, including through the use of digital technology, to develop literary skills and also to promote reading and literacy for enjoyment. Rebecca discusses the impressive use the organisation has made of Prison Radio in delivering audio books; in a partnership with Audible, NLT offered the opportunity for learners at Feltham to create their own podcast which included lessons and advice from spoken-word artist and podcaster George the Poet.
She also tells us about the “New Chapters” programme, which works with younger learners at HMPYOI Aylesbury and strives to make reading more accessible to those entering the system with a lower level of reading ability. Part of the programme involves running events which aim to attract learners with different interests and abilities, including talks by sports journalists and panel events with authors with lived experience of the Criminal Justice System.These events have proved extremely popular and are now one of the main focuses of the programme.
Hear more about New Chapters, Books Unlocked and NLT’s other work on literacy in prisons by listening to the full webinar. For more webinars, head over to The Prisoner Learning Alliance SoundCloud.
© Prisoner Learning Alliance 2021