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Law

Criminal Justice

PRIMEDIA

Given the overall poor level of literacy amongst inmates, ICT can provide an alternative learning tool for offenders, many of whom reject more traditional teaching approaches to improve their chances of rehabilitation and enable them to find employment in the outside world.  The project collected evidence to demonstrate the benefits of ICT to prisoners and a resultant reduction in recidivism and this was presented to Governments throughout Europe.

The aim of the PriMedia Network, financed by the European Commission’s Lifelong Learning programme ‘Grundtvig’, is to identify good practice in the application of ICT & multimedia in offender learning, including in-depth evaluation of their effectiveness; to test their potential application in a variety of prison contexts; and to disseminate good practice in prison education across Europe and beyond. 

The Network organises workshops, courses and seminars throughout Europe promoting effective practice in using ICT and multimedia to support prison education, including film & video screenings and exhibitions of photographic work.

The main objectives of the Network are to:

  1. Create an ongoing European network to promote ICT and multimedia in offender learning.

  2. Encourage the use of ICT and new technologies as part of the delivery of key competences in offender learning.

  3. Promote the use of new technologies in adult prison education in centres where they have not previously been used, especially in eastern Europe.

  4. Encourage inmates to get involved in ICT and multimedia as part of their prison education.

  5. Encourage links between prison educators and ICT & multimedia practitioners.
     

CRED-ABILITY

A Seeds for Growth-led European Union-funded programme that established accredited training for arts practitioners working in prisons throughout Europe.
 

European research demonstrates the invaluable role that the arts can play in the offender rehabilitation process. Despite this, outside of Britain, there are few accredited training programmes to prepare artists for work inside prisons or to formally accredit staff using the arts inside prisons.

Through the Cred-ability programme, experts in delivering arts within prisons collaborate with education experts to develop a training programme for artists (adaptable in a European context), and to create a framework to accredit practitioners delivering arts education in prisons.

The training empowers participants in their creativity, while preparing them for work in challenging settings, using a mixed media approach and up-to-date digital technologies. The programme provides the first accredited course of its kind and the qualification is recognised internationally.

More about the Cred-ability Training here.

LANGUAGES BEHIND BARS

The growing numbers of foreign nationals in European prisons can result in cultural tensions and an inability to communicate basic needs, rights and obligations. A multi-lingual, intercultural learning programme that engages foreign national offenders and prison staff was devised to promote better communication and cultural understanding, help prevent additional psychological and emotional stress, and facilitate more effective rehabilitation.

Coordinated by die Berater and funded by the EU Lifelong Learning Programme, Grundtvig, Languages Behind Bars:

  • Promotes communication and interaction in a common language in a prison setting.

  • Facilitates more effective rehabilitation of foreign national offenders.

  • Provides skills to help improve integration into society and the work-force after release.

  • Engages prison staff in offenders’ education programmes.
     

This involves:

  • Comprehensive desk research in which the current state of prison education and prison staff training, European and national policy, and the results of previous prison education projects are investigated.

  • Developing, piloting and evaluating a cross-cultural prison communication programme for prison staff and foreign national offenders using a mix of classroom instruction, ICT and workbook-based activities.

  • Establishing assessment and accreditation methods for the certification of foreign language and intercultural competences of prison officers working with foreign-national offenders, setting new European benchmark standards.

  • An inter-prison language and cultural written exchange to help inmates practice language skills and reflect on their own cultures, in which prison staff take an active and encouraging role.

  • Producing a good practice guide for enhancing communication between prison staff and foreign national offenders

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