Working Chance, a recruitment agency for ex-offenders in North London, helps women with a criminal record back into employment. The charity believes that by working with women who others have given up on and who are often mothers, they help to break the cycle of reoffending in future generations.
Since it was founded in 2007 Working Chance has made an outstanding impact on the lives of women in London with convictions who are looking for work. A specialist recruitment agency, they work to help ex-offenders get back into employment while also supporting them to overcome hurdles they face as they re-integrate into society after life in prison.
The core principle behind Working Chance is that accessing employment reduces reoffending. They also place a high importance on working with mothers who are ex-offenders, knowing that if they break the cycle of offending and provide positive role models for children, they are less likely to offend in years to come, which breaks the cycle and keeps family units together. Working Chance has a high success rate with 85% of women they help still in their jobs after six months, and just 5% reoffending, compared to a national average of 45%. The annual saving to the taxpayer for every woman who is not in prison is estimated at around £45,000 and the benefits to society of lower rates of reoffending are significant, with communities being safer and more pleasant places to live as a result.
The Foundation, alongside the Big Lottery Fund, awarded Working Chance £75,000 over three years, as well as additional non-financial support through our Enhance programme.
This follows previous funding of £33,000 over two years by the Foundation in 2014, and Working Chance winning our Outstanding Impact award in 2015.