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Justice and Society Research Centre

Bridging the Gap: A Review of the Pact Family Engagement Service

Main Contact: Jane Dominey with Charlotte Dodds and Serena Wright

The purpose of this research was to review the operation of PACT’s Family Engagement Service (FES) and identify ways in which FES contributes to outcomes associated with reduced re-offending, order and wellbeing in prisons, and outcomes likely to support the desistance process.  Drawing on existing knowledge about family engagement work in prisons, the research used observation, interaction and interview to document FES processes and examine the factors that are associated with positive outcomes for prisoners and their families.

 The primary research questions were:

  • What are the key processes of the FES practice model?
  • How are these linked to positive outcomes in the areas of family contact, positive intention about desistance and well-being in prison?
  • Is there any evidence to suggest that different approaches are needed to family engagement work for women and men in prison?

The final report was published in September 2016.