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Funding aimed at reducing reoffending supports Preston charity

30 September, 2019

Lancashire’s Police and Crime Commissioner visited to hear about plans for a dedicated workshop and retail space for those who are homeless, vulnerable or may have offended in the past, run by the Foxton Centre in Preston to offer training opportunities and help people get into work and off the streets.

Around £20,000 was provided from the Commissioner’s Reducing Reoffending Fund to help expand the centre’s social enterprise which engages with people, builds skills and confidence whilst also encouraging them to access the other support available through the Foxton Centre, such as a medical room with drop ins including dentist appointments, alongside food and access to IT equipment. 

The social enterprise utilises reclaimed wood and pallets, upcycling this into alternative products such as birdhouses, shelves and tables, to sell to the public. 

These are currently sold via social media and local markets, with popular products often getting made to order and all money going back into the work the organisation does to support the most vulnerable in and around the city. 

The new workshop and retail premises will help the enterprise massively expand and become a sustainable funding stream for the centre.

The Commissioner’s funding helps to deliver this expansion and also support the amount of time spent actively engaged on the project and the training and education offered to all involved. 

He said: 

“This is a fantastic project which I am delighted to support through my Reducing Reoffending Fund. Seeing the way that people haven engaged in the social enterprise and become really passionate about its development, alongside the way that it complements the other crucial work being done at the Foxton Centre, is really exciting. 

“Policing alone cannot prevent people reoffending and that is why I continue to support initiatives that break the cycle offenders all too often find themselves trapped in, moving them away for a life of crime. 

“By thinking differently and investing relatively small amounts of money we are able to make a real impact by avoiding offenders returning through the criminal justice system, and make our communities safer places to live and work.”

Jeff Marsh, Chief Executive of The Foxton Centre:

“We are pleased to receive the support of the Police and Crime Commissioner for this innovative project.   The funding will assist in establishing our social enterprise which is designed to provide hands on opportunities for work experience for our service users.”

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