This evaluation considers the effectiveness of Pact's Kinship Care Support Service (KCSS) at HMP Holloway.
The service supports and advises families and friends who care for female prisoners' children and also supports the prisoners in contacting their children and their children's carers. The evaluation looks at both quantitative and qualitative data gained from the Mothers in prison, their kinship carers, a small number of children, Pact's staff and other related prison staff, professionals and members of other organisations. Key findings show that over one year there were 3000 service users reached and two thirds of these were ongoing. The highest area of need was information about visits and prison systems. Mothers also needed reassurance that their children had someone looking after them. With regards to this, the KCSS within Children's and Family Visits, group, one-to-one and telephone support were highly rated with the majority saying that they did not know where else they could have got such support. Prison staff also valued the KCSS role and its contribution to prisoner stability. Referrals, sign posting, partnership and policy development were also found to be strong. Further development was needed within information leaflets and when monitoring service user feedback and ethnicity. As the maintenance of family ties is widely recognised as a key factor in successful resettlement and rehabilitation, there is the need for the continuation of KCSS, which this evaluation has proved to be effective in contributing to support to prisoners, their children and kinship carers. There is also some evidence of successful resettlement outcomes. The evaluation recommends that such services should be extended to all female prisons and to primary carers in male prisons.
See Evaluation of Kinship Care Support below: