Digital Participation At The Heart Of Early Intervention

July 14, 2022

Early Intervention From Youth Justice Services

The number of children in the criminal justice system has dropped significantly over the past 15 years. According to the National Audit Office, the average number of young people in custody fell by 73% in the decade up to 2021.

Research points to fewer ‘first-time entrants’ into the system as a large factor behind the decline in these numbers, citing the effective diversion activity of youth justice services.

Experts by Experience

A recent report carried out by Charity Leaders Unlockwas co-produced by young people with lived experience of the criminal justice and care systems aimed to amplify the views of young people on the systems designed to support them. In particular, young people spoke of the trauma experienced whilst in prison especially in recent years with the pandemic contributing to reduced visits, long periods of isolation and patchy face-to-face support, compounding mental health issues being experienced by children in custody in the UK.

Earlier this year, Mind Of My Own, in partnership with North Yorkshire Youth Justice services, developed Xchange – The first digital participation tool to hear the authentic voices of young people using youth justice services. As ever, our ambition is to positively influence practice and change the system to improve outcomes for children. Specifically, the ‘My World’ feature allows young people at risk of offending an opportunity to share what is important to them. Talk about family life and their environment in an accessible and interactive way. For the Practitioners and Services supporting them, it gives them an opportunity to see the world through the eyes of the young person, better understand the context in which a crime was committed and create tailored, child-centred support around their lived experience.

Strength Based 

Our strengths-based apps support positive well-being, allowing children to structure their thoughts in their own time and in their own words. In an environment where 87% of young people cautioned or sentenced in the UK are boys, who often struggle to communicate how they are feeling. Mind Of My Own can be a lifeline in getting the support they need and deserve. 

Mind Of My Own helps Early Intervention and Youth Justice services to engage with hard-to-reach young people and understand their experiences, in order to support children in leading positive lives away from crime and away from custody.

To learn more about Xchange, email us at hello@mindofmyown.org.uk