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Alliance of Sport joins major reform of probation services

The Alliance of Sport in Criminal Justice is offering its Community of Practice the chance to get involved in a new initiative to deliver personal wellbeing support to prison leavers.

We have partnered with Catch22, a charity and social business which has been awarded nine regional contracts to support prison leavers on licence, those requiring post-sentence supervision and those serving community or suspended sentences. 

Catch22Catch22 are leading the wellbeing element of a major new model to strengthen resettlement and rehabilitation in the probation service, ensuring the public are safe, supporting victims of crime and tackling the complex issues of reoffending. 

Part of this transformation involves a new regional leadership structure to enable greater partnership working and services that fit more closely with individuals’ diverse needs. 

Under new ‘Commissioned Rehabilitative Services’ (CRS) arrangements, Catch22 are delivering the personal wellbeing services strand of the model, using a network of suppliers to support the resettlement and rehabilitation of prison leavers. Organisations within specific Police Crime Commission (PCC) regions will have access to referrals from the probation service into their projects. 

As part of this process, there is an opportunity for organisations that provide sport and physical activity-based community programmes, and/or other social and wellbeing programmes, to get involved. This is where the Alliance of Sport’s Community of Practice comes in. 

Our network of organisations use sport in the Criminal Justice System to reduce violence, crime and reoffending. Their sport-based programmes provide meaningful opportunities to engage, offer pro-social relationships, build resilience, provide support networks, role models and in some cases pathways into volunteering, training and employment. 

This is precisely the kind of support that is needed in Catch22’s initial pilot areas to provide community reintegration and rehabilitation support for offenders, specifically around their wellbeing, as they pass through the gate and back into the community. The service users will be males aged between 18-26 and adult males (26 and over). 

Pilot areas for the initiative will be: London, Avon and Somerset (including Bristol), Dorset, Hampshire, Thames Valley (Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Milton Keynes and East Berkshire) and West Mercia (Worcestershire, Herefordshire, Shropshire and Telford). 

Justin Coleman, Alliance of Sport Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer, said: “It is an essential step forward for sport and physical activity to be included in this rehabilitation and resettlement programme. 

“The Alliance of Sport is delighted to partner with Catch22 and help connect our Community of Practice to this major wellbeing programme to ensure prison leavers have the best possible life-long supported opportunities for sustainable rehabilitation and reintegration, and therefore move safely and positively into a supportive society.” 

Stephanie Cavaco, Catch22’s Senior Operations Manager – Personal Wellbeing Services, added: “Catch22 is very excited to announce our partnership with Alliance of Sport, which will make a huge difference in supporting the individuals on our personal wellbeing programme.

“Alliance of Sport has a large network of organisations which support those in the Criminal Justice System to reduce reoffending –  providing meaningful opportunities to service users to help them build confidence, resilience and positive support networks.”

To get involved, you need to: 

  • Express your interest in being part of the personal wellbeing resource library which will be provided to regional probation staff for referrals
  • Participate in an introductory regional/national workshop to focus on the expected outcomes of the Commissioned Rehabilitative Services for Personal Wellbeing 
  • Provide a list of opportunities to assist in ‘supporting and empowering’ service users in their roles as parents, and identify services that can provide support and opportunities for their children and help build positive family relationships 
  • Join annual network events to enhance collaboration and partnerships and ‘what works’ seminars to enhance best practice 
  • Feed back to the Alliance of Sport any ideas, challenges and issues that would help improve the delivery of sport and physical activity to this cohort of service users 

Please contact Andrew Anastasiou at to discuss this opportunity further. 


Photo by Victor Freitas on Unsplash

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