Can you give help to an ex-criminal?

VOLUNTEERS are being recruited to mentor offenders under a pilot project to help slash reoffending rates in Calderdale.

Voluntary Action Calderdale is working with West Yorkshire Police and West Yorkshire Probation Trust on the Commit 2 Change programme.

The two-year project aims to help offenders break the cycle of crime by addressing issues such as mental health problems, drug and alcohol addictions, housing, unemployment, debt and money management and low self-esteem.

Voluntary Action Calderdale is recruiting volunteers to work on the scheme.

They will be trained up and matched with an offender who they will support as they complete a court ordered requirement.

The length of the match and the type of support will vary.

Mentors will receive ongoing support from the mentor coordinator and probation staff. The training course is scheduled to begin in early October and will last six weeks.

The course is free and will cover topics such as confidentiality, boundaries, safeguarding, diversity and offender support.

An open evening is being held for anyone interested on September 21 from 4.30pm to 6.30pm at the VAC Resource Centre, Hall Street, Halifax.

For more information, call Sarah Longfield on 01422 431090 or email for an application pack.