Youth justice

Young girlAt The Children's Society, we are resolute in our commitment to the most disadvantaged children and young people, determined to challenge negative public attitudes and positive about what children and young people can achieve,

What makes our youth justice services different?

We work with over 900 children and young people every year who are or have been in trouble with the law. Our child-focused services target children and young people who are most vulnerable to anti-social behaviour and offending.

We bring creativity and fresh thinking to every new challenge. All the work we do is supported by transparent, evidence-based reporting and evaluation.

Creative prevention - we facilitate creative prevention programmes, working with schools and communities to help children and families deal with the challenges that often lead to a cycle of offending and custody.

Restorative justice - our restorative justice activities make a real difference to families and communities, helping young people address the cause and effect of their actions and supporting victims of crime. We offer pre-court and court interventions and work in school. community and custodial settings.

Education services - we ensure children and young people have full access to educational services, including those who have dropped out or been excluded from school. We work with children's services, schools, specialist agencies, custodial establishments and care homes to prepare young offenders returning to education. We also provide assessment, key work, family support and behaviour management.

Looked after children - our programmes help looked after children facing placement or breakdown, bullying or conflict with carers, and who may be at risk of offending, or have actually done so.

Black and minority ethnic groups - we offer training and consultancy for professionals on a range of issues affecting children and young people from black and minority ethnic groups, including early intervention and how to tackle the drivers of offending behaviour.

Custody and resettlement - we help young people facing custody and resettlement to manage the issues and relationships involved, aiming to improve their experiences so they participate constructively in their rehabilitation.

Young boy

Dan's story

'Mum and Dad split up when I was seven and Mum got a new boyfriend. One day he punched me. I thought I'd done something wrong. Mum cried so he punched her too. Soon he was hitting me every day for silly things that just annoyed him. One day I hit a stranger in the street because she annoyed me. By 15 I was in jail. When I came out, The Children's Society were waiting for me. They got me back into school and are making my life better.'
–Dan, 16