Milestones is a solutions-focused through-the-gate mentoring programme with a 12 year history of development and testing. It includes intensive resettlement support for 6-12 months post-release. The project currently serves young offenders released from HMPs Portland, Isis and Dorchester. Having successfully evolved from an original Nacro project which began in 1999, the aims of Milestones are:
• To give young men the opportunity to prepare fully for their release
• To increase the opportunities for, education, employment and training
• To help raise self-esteem and confidence
• To help nurture better relationships between families (if appropriate), young people and the community
• To reduce re-offending
Young men referred to the project are matched with a trained volunteer mentor from their area prior to release from custody. The mentoring relationship starts in the prison and continues post-release for a period of usually not less than six months. Support, advice and guidance are the key constituents of the project and the support offered is tailored to individual mentees’ needs.
Milestones is proud to have approved provider status from the Mentoring and Befriending Foundation and in 2011 the initiative was recognised by a prestigious Butler Trust Commendation.