Women in Prison (WIP) provides gender-specialist support for women affected by the criminal justice system and campaigns to expose the injustice and damage caused to women and their families by imprisonment. They deliver support, advice and counselling across the women’s prison estate in England. They will meet with women at the gate on the day of release and continue that engagement in the community through outreach and their three women’s centres.
WIP’s 30 years’ experience working directly with women in the system informs their campaigns work. Their core campaign is for a radical reduction in the women’s prison population which works alongside their vision for a society where the abuse, marginalisation and poverty at the root of so much of women’s offending is addressed before women come into contact with the criminal justice system.
Key to what WIP do is that their support for women is holistic. Their Women Centres are one-stop-shops for women to access all the services they need under one roof. WIP’s staff are gender-specialist practitioners, providing support across all the difficulties and barriers commonly experienced by women affected by the criminal justice system – domestic and sexual violence, poor mental and physical health, addiction, homelessness, debt, and unemployment.
WomenMATTA is WIP’s women’s community project that provides practical and emotional support to women in Manchester and Trafford at all stages of the criminal justice system, including at point of arrest, women serving community orders, women leaving custody, and women considered ‘at risk of’ offending. WomenMATTA is part of the Greater Manchester Women Offender’s Alliance, that provides services as part of Greater Manchester’s ‘Whole System Approach’ to female offending.
WIP’s Women’s Support Centre (Surrey) offers women a safe and homely space in which to access gender-specialist support services. Situated on the High Street in Woking, the Centre has a living room area, space for workshops, quiet rooms for counselling and a kitchen. The Centre is about creating a community and a creative space as well as support services.
WIP’s third women’s centre is the Beth Centre in Lambeth which provides a safe, comfortable, women-only space to address any support needs. As well as offering intense holistic support there is a creche, computer access and space to relax, listen to music, watch TV or take part in a varied timetable of workshops and activities.
Accommodation / Advice and Support / Benefits and Debt Advice / Domestic Violence services / Education and Training / Employment / Health and Wellbeing / Life and Social Skills / Personal / Substance Misuse /