Background to the Network for Ex-Service Personnel project 2016-2018

In 2016, HMPPS Co-Financing Organisation was the recipient of an MoD Covenant Fund Trust (was Grant) fund. The project was called “Network for Ex-Service Personnel” (NESP). As a recap on the NESP project 2016-2018; the original proposal was to work with those Detainees Under Sentence (DUS) at the Military Corrective Training Centre, Colchester and also those in HMPPS CJS who have previously served for the Armed Forces and help support them through the gate with the ultimate goal of finding employment and reduce reoffending rates.

Over the duration of the project, the work remit expanded considerably to work with other external; organisations (RFEA, Ubique, SToMP, NPR and Ormiston Families). There was also another key piece of work looking at statutory supervision for those leaving MCTC based on a HMiP recommendation during the project lifespan.

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In 2018, HMPPS CFO was invited to apply for continuation funding from the Armed Forces Covenant Trust and in February this year, was told we had been successful, along with a small number of other organisations.

During the previous NESP project, consultation with stakeholders (senior policy representatives from the Ministry of Justice, HM Prison and Probation Service and HMP veteran leads), engagement with veterans through qualitative evaluations (reports submitted with the final project report) and contribution to the National Prison Radio documentary strand (funded through NESP) have informed design of the strategic aims for our second NESP iteration.

During NESP II, direct engagement with veterans serves as a ‘sense check’ against each delivery strand, helping to develop a programme that addresses day-to-day issues and concerns of veterans within the criminal justice sector whilst also developing strategic and legacy solutions that impact beyond the funding period. .