CONTENTS

An independent evaluation of the
Transforming Lives project delivered
by Crossroads Trust

AUGUST 2015

Author: Rachel Egginton BSc (Hons)

TRANSFORMING
LIVES

CONTENTS
1. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
2. THE ORGANISATION

3
4

2.1 TRANSFORMING LIVES

4

3. THE EVALUATION

5

3.1 PURPOSE OF THE EVALUATION

5

3.2 EVALUATION QUESTIONS

5

4. PEER MENTORING

7

WHAT IS PEER MENTORING?

7

PEER MENTORING IN THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM

8

MAKING PEER MENTORING SUCCESSFUL

9

5. METHODOLOGY

11

5.1 PARTICIPANTS

11

5.2 ETHICS

11

5.3 RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS

11

6. ANALYSIS

13

6.1 QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS

13

6.2 QUANTITATIVE ANALYSIS

24

7. RESULTS

26

7.1 CLIENT QUESTIONS

26

7.2 MENTOR QUESTIONS

28

7.3 COMMUNITY QUESTIONS

29

8. DISCUSSION

31

8.1 RECOMMENDATIONS

31

8.2 CONCLUSION

33

9. REFERENCES
APPENDICIES

34
36

APPENDIX A

37

APPENDIX B

38

APPENDIX C

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Report: Transforming Lives Project Evaluation

1. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
An external independent evaluation of the
Crossroads Trust’s Transforming Lives
project was undertaken. Participants who
took part in the evaluation included clients,
mentors and members of the community.
The range of participants involved in the
evaluation allowed the impact of the
Transforming Lives project to be evaluated
from several different angles. The
evaluation used both qualitative and
quantitative methods of analysis to enable
a thorough exploration of the impact and
outcomes of the Transforming Lives project.
The findings of the evaluation have been
overwhelmingly positive and the success of
the Transforming Lives project is clear.
Transforming Lives has enabled exoffenders to change their lives for the
better and has provided the crucial support
to those who are motivated to desist from
re-offending. The project has also provided
opportunities to mentors in terms of
training, skill development and
employability. Members of the community
have had a positive experience of
Transforming Lives and have noted how the

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project has supported ex-offenders in
becoming more active within the
community. The Project has changed
community members’ perception of
working with ex-offenders, positively
reducing stigma.
The Transforming Lives project has
delivered positive outcomes for all people
involved with the project and this is
evidenced through the analysis and results
section of the evaluation. A number of
recommendations have been made in
relation to how the Transforming Lives
project can be developed in the future so
that even more people can benefit from the
excellent service which is currently being
provided. Overall the Transforming Lives
project has been highly successful and is
operated and managed professionally to a
high standard. The findings of the
evaluation demonstrate the clear need for
the service and highlight the
developmental potential of the project for
the future. 


Report: Transforming Lives Project Evaluation

2. THE ORGANISATION
The Crossroads Trust is an outreach mentoring and befriending service supporting
ex-offenders being released to the local community. The Trust also supports
individuals with criminal convictions in the community struggling to cope. The
Crossroads Trust has a focus on helping low risk offenders. The service provides
information, advice, signposting and practical support to clients with criminal
records many of whom have received custodial or community based sentences. They
offer a mentoring and befriending service helping clients to access local services and
promote social inclusion to help them make a positive contribution to society. Many
of their clients have complex problems including mental well-being, substance
misuse, and debt issues. Literacy and numeracy is also an issue for many and support
is needed with completing benefit applications, job searches, and preparing for job
interviews; as well as support with financial capability issues.
From their research and focus groups clients have told the Trust that many exoffenders are in urgent need of a helping hand especially following release from
prison. Potential clients need to know what help and support is available to them to
help them become independent and make a positive contribution to society.

2.1 TRANSFORMING LIVES
The Transforming Lives Project is funded by a small grant from Awards for All
through the Big Lottery Fund. It is an innovative way of helping to reduce reoffending rates in Warwickshire and promote safer communities. The Trust provides
accredited mentoring training for dedicated volunteers from the communities of
North Warwickshire to support its clients. Some of the Trusts volunteer mentors
have had personal experience of the criminal justice system themselves and
successfully turned their lives around for the better.
The overall aim of this project is to provide released offenders resettling to North
Warwickshire with support to achieve their goal of desisting from re-offending
through a model of peer-led support. Released offenders face many barriers to
maintaining a crime free lifestyle and the added support they receive from a peer
who can act as role model as well as agent of practical change around issues such as
improving life skills, finding meaningful employment, accommodation and financial
capability management will contribute to a reduction in re-offending rates.

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3. THE EVALUATION
3.1 PURPOSE OF THE EVALUATION
The purpose of the evaluation is to independently assess the impact and outcomes of the
Transforming Lives project upon clients, mentors and the community. The evaluation has
been funded by Santander Universities, through the Enterprising Internships scheme run by
the University of Birmingham. The author of the evaluation is an MA Social Work student
from the University of Birmingham and therefore is independent of Crossroads Trust. The
author has been funded through the internship scheme, not by Crossroads Trust and
therefore the evaluation will be objective. The findings of the evaluation aim to assist in the
development of the project, including improving the operational aspects and sustainability
of the project.
For the purpose of this evaluation, ‘client’ will be used to describe an individual with a
criminal conviction who has accessed the Transforming Lives project to be either mentored
or befriended. ‘Mentor’ will be used to describe an individual who has trained as a mentor
for the Transforming Lives project and who may or may not have a criminal conviction.
Community impact will be assessed through obtaining information from various local
organisations who have worked with Crossroads Trust and/or some of the clients of the
Transforming Lives project. These participants will be referred to as ‘community members’.

3.2 EVALUATION QUESTIONS
The questions which the evaluation has sought to answer have been compiled from the
objectives of the Transforming Lives project as set out both in the project brief and in the
Awards for All (Big Lottery Fund) funding application, from where the funding for the
project was obtained. The questions can be divided into three categories, respective to the
three groups which the project set out to impact upon: clients, mentors and the community.
CLIENT QUESTIONS
1. Has the Transforming Lives project reduced the likelihood of clients re-offending?
2. Have clients been provided with the support needed to reintegrate into the community
and to be more active within their community?
3. Has the support received by clients been tailored to their needs?
4. Have mentors been positive role models for clients?
5. Has the Transforming Lives project supported clients to achieve outcomes in relation to:
improved life skills, positive thinking, employment, financial capability, qualifications and
training?
6. What factors contribute to successful outcomes for clients?

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MENTOR QUESTIONS
1. Have mentors been given sufficient training to be able to fulfil their role?
2. Have mentors been provided with appropriate support within their role?
3. Has being a mentor for the Transforming Lives project enabled mentors to achieve
outcomes in relation to: improved life skills, positive thinking, confidence, employment,
qualifications and training?
4. Has the mentoring training been evaluated and accredited?
COMMUNITY QUESTIONS
1. Has Crossroads Trust made positive connections with organisations, employers and the
community which will benefit clients accessing the Transforming Lives project?
2. Have the links which Crossroads Trust have made with organisations, employers and the
community had an impact on people’s perceptions and/or reducing discrimination of people
with criminal convictions?
3. Have clients become more active citizens within their community as a result of their
involvement with the Transforming Lives project?
4. How has the Transforming Lives project been managed and operated?
The evaluation aims to examine each of the questions to see whether the outcomes set out
in the funding application and project brief have been fulfilled by the Transforming Lives
project. The findings in relation to the evaluation questions will be explored in the results
section of the evaluation.

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4. PEER MENTORING
WHAT IS PEER MENTORING?
Mentoring is defined by the Mentoring and Befriending Foundation (2014) as:
‘a voluntary, mutually beneficial and purposeful relationship in which an individual gives time
to support another to enable them to make changes in their life’.
In a systematic meta-analysis of mentoring interventions, Tolan et al. (2008) go a step
further and give four key characteristics which define mentoring:
1. Interaction between two individuals over an extended period of time
2. Inequality of experience, knowledge, or power between the mentor and mentee
(recipient), with the mentor possessing the greater share
3. The mentee is in a position to imitate and benefit from the knowledge, skill, ability, or
experience of the mentor
4. The absence of the role inequality that typifies other helping relationships and is marked
by professional training, certification, or predetermined status differences such as parentchild or teacher-student relationships
In essence what both of these definitions are highlighting is that a mentor will help a
mentee to make positive changes by providing the mentee with a positive role model and
the support they require over a prolonged period of time. Whilst the mentor may possess a
greater amount of knowledge or experience, the power dynamic in the mentoring
relationship is different to other types of relationships because the mentor is voluntarily
giving time to support the mentee, rather than being obliged to provide this support. The
features of mentoring described in these definitions are applicable to peer mentoring,
however peer mentoring is slightly different in that the nature of the mentor is more
specific. In peer mentoring, the mentor has had similar experiences to the mentee and
because of this it is suggested that the mentor will be better placed to understand and
empathise with the mentee than a non-peer mentor (Finnegan et al., 2010).
Sharing similar experiences may bring a different dynamic to the peer mentor-mentee
relationship which could mean that mentees feel that there is less of a role inequality with a
peer mentor compared to a non-peer mentor. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
(2003) have found that mentees are able to form more genuine and lasting relationships
with peer mentors compared to non-peer mentors or other support services. They found
that this is due to mentees believing that peer mentors are more credible because they are
able to empathise and understand their situation. The literature that is currently available in
relation to mentoring is often not specific to peer mentoring. Literature which is available is
usually in the form of evaluations of specific mentoring projects which have been run,
although there is some government research which has been done on a larger scale.
Therefore the literature review will be somewhat limited due to the amount of relevant
literature that is available with regards to peer mentoring and ex-offenders.

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PEER MENTORING IN THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM
Peer mentoring clearly has an application to individuals being released from prison whom
have a desire to make positive changes and desist from re-offending. The Ministry of Justice
(2013) have highlighted the effectiveness of peer mentoring in providing support for exoffenders and also having the potential to reduce re-offending rates. As well as peer
mentoring, the Ministry of Justice (2013) have commented on the importance of exoffenders receiving support with housing, employment, alcohol and substance misuse
issues, and mental health problems. Even if peer mentors cannot provide direct support
with all of these issues, they can signpost mentees to enable them to access further support
meaning that peer mentors can provide support for ex-offenders on a wide variety of issues
(Celinska, 2000).
Aitken (2014) explains the role which peer mentoring can play in the criminal justice system
and further reiterates elements seen as important for ex-offenders by the Ministry of Justice:
‘Mentoring is a voluntary relationship of engagement, encouragement and trust. Its immediate
priority is to offer support, guidance and practical assistance to offenders in the vulnerable
period around their release. Its longer term purpose is to help them find a stable lifestyle in
which accommodation, employment, ties with family and friends, and a growing two-way
relationship with the mentor all play their part in preventing a return to re-offending.’
Studies which have examined mentoring programmes have demonstrated the effectiveness
of mentoring in providing support for ex-offenders and reducing re-offending rates. Fletcher
and Batty (2012) found that peer mentoring of ex-offenders helped to increase confidence
and self-esteem in ex-offenders as well as providing them with support to get back into
employment and reintegrate into society. Wadia and Parkinson (2015) also found peer
mentoring to have positive effects. They evaluated two mentoring programmes which began
in prison and continued to provide support for ex-offenders upon release from prison. They
found that mentors were able to provide ex-offenders with the support they required and
that for those who had a peer mentor specifically, they valued the empathy and
understanding that the peer mentor provided. Joliffe and Farrington (2007) analysed 18
different evaluations of mentoring programmes for ex-offenders and provide further
support for the positive impact of mentoring. They also found that mentoring was most
effective when meetings between mentors and mentees were longer in duration and more
frequent which highlights the importance and value of the relationship for mentees.
As well as mentees valuing the relationship they have developed with their mentor, studies
have also found that mentors also value the relationship. Research shows that the
mentoring process can be beneficial and have positive impacts for mentors as well as for
mentees. Philip and Hendry (2000) looked at the experiences of mentors from a variety of
different mentoring projects and organisations. They found that mentors felt that the
mentoring process had helped them to improve their interpersonal skills and had deepened
their understanding of other people. Mentors felt satisfied that they were able to support
mentees and the experience also helped them to make sense of some of their own past
experiences. Kavanagh and Borrill (2013) explored the experiences of ex-offender peer
mentors and found that the mentors found the mentoring process empowering and
emotionally rewarding. They also found that being a peer mentor helped to improve the ex-

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offenders skills and self-esteem and that the mentors valued the relationship they
developed with the mentee. St Giles Trust (2014) highlights the benefits to mentors in terms
of training and qualifications. Through their skills and employment project, mentors were
able to gain qualifications which not only enabled them to provide support for mentees, but
also helped to improve their own employability.
In conclusion, the literature that is available in relation to peer mentoring for ex-offenders
very much supports the effectiveness of this method in enabling ex-offenders to make
positive changes and desist from re-offending. There are certain aspects of mentoring
programmes which have been identified in the literature that contribute to peer mentoring
being effective and also aspects which make mentoring less effective. It is useful and
important to be able to take these aspects into account when designing or evaluating
mentoring interventions.

MAKING PEER MENTORING SUCCESSFUL
Within the literature, a number of common features have been identified which are
important for peer mentoring to be most productive.
1. Working in partnership with criminal justice agencies (Clinks and MBF, 2012; Aitken,
2014; Wadia and Parkinson, 2015). Having a good relationship with criminal justice
agencies is useful in terms of obtaining referrals and also sharing information
appropriately in relation to support required and also potential risk. Having access to
referrals and information enables effective operation of mentoring programmes.
2. Matching mentors and mentees appropriately (Clinks and MBF, 2012; Aitken, 2014;
Wadia and Parkinson, 2015). Matching mentees to mentors who can provide the most
effective support is important for the mentoring relationship to be successful. Mentees
who felt that there mentors understood their needs had more positive outcomes.
3. Monitoring and evaluating the mentoring programme (Huggins, 2010; Clinks and
MBF, 2012; Aitken, 2014). Having a clear method of operation in mentoring programmes
and being able to monitor and evaluate the operation is important if programmes are to
be sustainable.
4. Mentoring is most effective when it is ‘through the gate’ (Huggins, 2010; Ministry of
Justice, 2013; Aitken, 2014; Wadia and Parkinson, 2015). ‘Through the gate’ mentoring is
where mentoring begins before the ex-offender leaves prison and then continues once
they are released into the community. Studies have found ‘through the gate’ mentoring
to be more effective than just mentoring once ex-offenders have left prison.
5. The mentor-mentee relationship is maintained over an extended period of time and
there is frequent contact between the mentor and mentee (Ministry of Justice, 2013;
Aitken, 2014). Mentees who had longer lasting relationships with their mentors had

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more positive outcomes than those who had shorter relationships and who had less
contact with their mentor.
The five features identified from the literature which contribute to successful mentoring
programmes will be important when evaluating the Transforming Lives project. The extent
to which these features are evident within the Transforming Lives project will be explored
within the discussion section of the evaluation

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Report: Transforming Lives Project Evaluation

5. METHODOLOGY
5.1 PARTICIPANTS
There were three participant groups that took part in the evaluation: clients, mentors and
community members. Crossroads Trust provided a database of clients, mentors and
community members who had been involved in the Transforming Lives project and potential
participants were contacted by phone and or email to ask whether they would like to take
part in the evaluation.
Nine clients, nine mentors and six community members who had been involved with the
Transforming Lives project were available to be contacted at the time of the evaluation,
although more than nine clients had been involved with the project. One client was unable
to be contacted due to having changed contact details, however all other clients agreed to
take part in the evaluation. Two of the clients who agreed to take part ended up being
unable to do so due to personal difficulties at the time the evaluation was taking place so six
clients in total participated in the evaluation. Two mentors did not respond to the emails or
phone calls but all other mentors did and agreed to take part, meaning that seven mentors
participated. All six of the community members responded to the phone calls and
consequently took part in the evaluation. Therefore 19 out of a possible 24 participants took
part in the evaluation which was a good response rate.

5.2 ETHICS
Before taking part in the evaluation, participants were given an information sheet explaining
the purpose of the evaluation. The information sheet also explained that participants’ data
would be kept anonymous and confidential and that participants have the right to withdraw
their data at any time should they wish to do so. Participants were also given the
opportunity to ask any questions about the evaluation both before and after participating
and before signing the information sheet to give their fully informed consent to take part in
the evaluation. A copy of the information sheet can be found in Appendix A.

5.3 RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
Both qualitative and quantitative methods were used in the evaluation but the primary
research method used was semi-structured interviews which took place either in person,
over the phone or via email. The questions used in the interviews were devised from the
evaluation questions. Different questions were devised for clients, mentors and the
community; copies of each interview question sheet used can be found in Appendix B.
Although the questions provided the basis for the interviews, if a participant wished to
expand their views beyond the remit of a question then these views were explored and the

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data was recorded. The interviews were recorded by the interviewer in a written format at
the time of the interview.
A Likert scale questionnaire was also used in the evaluation with clients only as a way of
quantitatively assessing whether the Transforming Lives project answered the evaluation
questions or not. The questionnaire was comprised of 13 statements and the scale had seven
points ranging from strongly agree to strongly disagree. Statements used in the
questionnaire were also devised from the evaluation questions. A copy of the questionnaire
used can be found in Appendix C.

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6. ANALYSIS
6.1 QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS
Thematic analysis was used to analyse the interview data gathered from clients, mentors
and community members. A model (figure 1) was devised as part of this process and this
helps to illustrate the outcomes of the analysis. Thematic analysis is a method commonly
used in research to analyse qualitative data and can be defined as:
“a method for identifying, analysing and reporting patterns (themes) within data…frequently it
goes further than this, and interprets various aspects of the research topic” Braun and Clarke
(2006).
As a result of the analysis five key themes were identified which capture peoples’
experiences of the Transforming Lives project. The key themes and their interactions are
shown in the diagram (figure 1). Each of the key themes has several sub themes which
illustrate the different aspects captured within each theme. A central theme was also
identified which links the five key themes together. The arrows shown in the diagram
highlight the connection of each theme to the central theme of ‘Need for the unique service
provided by Crossroads Trust’ and also the links between certain themes.
‘Support’ is linked to ‘development’, ‘changing perceptions’ and ‘professionalism’. ‘Support’
and ‘development’ are linked bilaterally. The support provided to clients and mentors
enables them to develop and grow both as people and in terms of skills and employability.
From the other direction, development of clients and mentors will enable more support to
be provided and this support will be more effective. This is because the development of
mentors will mean they are better equipped to support clients and the development of
clients may lead to the transition from client to mentor, hence creating more support
opportunities for new clients.
‘Support’ and ‘changing perceptions’ are also linked bilaterally. Providing clients with
support to enable them to make positive changes in their lives and become more active
citizens will evidence the effectiveness of peer mentoring and that people with criminal
convictions are able to make changes. If people are able to see the positive effects of the
support provided then this may change their perceptions of ex-offenders. From the other
direction, by changing people’s perceptions of ex-offenders and enabling them to have a
greater understanding of offending and peer mentoring this could help facilitate a more
supportive community for ex-offenders to be a part of. Therefore, through ‘changing
perceptions’ people with criminal convictions will be better supported to make positive
changes.
Finally, ‘support’ is also linked to ‘professionalism’ in a unilateral direction. The professional
running of Crossroads Trust and the Transforming Lives project will mean that the support
provided to both clients and mentors will be of a high standard. High standards of support
are likely to facilitate more effective development of clients and mentors which in turn will

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mean that outcomes will be more positive and hence changing peoples’ perceptions of exoffenders is more likely.
‘Changing perceptions’ is linked bilaterally to both ‘development’ and ‘resilience’. The more
that clients and mentors are able to develop, the more positive outcomes there will be.
Evidence of development and positive outcomes is likely to facilitate changing peoples’
perceptions of ex-offenders. From the other direction, if peoples’ perceptions of exoffenders within their community are positive then this will create a more favourable
environment for ex-offenders to be able to develop.
In terms of ‘resilience’, the more peoples’ perceptions of ex-offenders change, the less
resilient ex-offenders will need to be. This is because if people have a greater understanding
of offending and ex-offenders’ motivation to change then they are less likely to stigmatise
and isolate ex-offenders. However, from the other direction, it is important that exoffenders remain resilient so that despite the discrimination and adversity they are faced
with, they continue to make positive changes and become more active citizens. The more
positive and active they become the more evidence there will be to use to try and change
peoples’ perceptions of ex-offenders.
All themes are connected to ‘Need for the unique service provided by Crossroads Trust’
because the content of each theme encompasses all the components which make the

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service provided through Transforming Lives unique. Each theme also highlights the need for
this service and the undertones of gratitude and positive impact throughout evidences this
need. The ‘Need for the unique service provided by Crossroads Trust’ is clearly evidenced
below in the analysis of each theme and the interview data which support this analysis.
However, the quote below gives a good summary of the findings of the evaluation and shed
a light on how people have experienced Transforming Lives and Crossroads Trust. The need
for the services which Crossroads Trust provide to enable people with criminal convictions to
lead an offence-free lifestyle and support them in making positive changes is absolutely
essential, and this is demonstrated throughout the analysis.
“The team are so approachable and have gone out of their way to get under the skin of
clients and go that extra mile, it must light the fire inside some ex-offenders. The passion
and energy they work with deserves medals. What Crossroads are doing is wonderful,
they are like the yellow pages for consultation within peer mentoring. They have a much
more bespoke approach compared to the one size fits all service provided by other
organisations.”
Jonathan Robinson, author and journalist

SUPPORT
The theme of ‘support’ was derived from the sub themes of ‘practical emotional and social
support’, ‘empathy and understanding’, ‘genuine, real people’, and ‘clients and mentors’. The
theme of ‘support’ highlights the nature of the support provided through the Transforming
Lives project to both clients and mentors. Clients have expressed a high amount of gratitude
towards Transforming Lives for the support they have received and often what has been
pinpointed as the strength of the support is how the people providing the support are real
and genuine. This value placed upon the realness of the people who are at the heart of
Transforming Lives came across not just from clients but from mentors and community
members also. The sub themes below provide evidence for the support provided through the
Transforming Lives project.
Practical, emotional and social
Clients of the Transforming Lives project identified ways in which they had been supported
by their peer mentors and Crossroads Trust. Although some clients were supported as
distance clients, they still identified that they had received high levels of support from
Transforming Lives. Clients identified that they had been supported practically, emotionally
and socially.
“I have been going out and doing things with my mentor during the day such as going for a
coffee and having a chat, I enjoy seeing them” Client 2
“She helped me get my birth certificate, bank account and driving license. She also helps me in
terms of probation, knowing what I can and can’t do and explaining what things mean” Client
6 (distance)

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“He will phone to see how I am” Client 8 (distance)
Empathy and understanding
Clients of the Transforming Lives project have emphasised the importance of mentors being
able to understand their situation. They highlighted how valuable it is that peer mentors
with criminal convictions are able to really put themselves in their shoes.
“He has a previous conviction so has been in that dark place and understands what it’s like”
Client 7 (distance)
“I’ve got that thing in common with him because he was inside too” Client 5
One client who had made the transition from client to peer mentor commented on the
importance of empathy for the mentoring role.
“I think it is important to have walked the same path as the mentee because you can’t
understand what it’s like being in prison unless you’ve actually been there and done it” Client 1
Genuine, real people
Many of the participants interviewed, including clients, mentors, and members of other
community organisations, commented on how the directors and anyone involved with
Transforming Lives comes across as real and genuine. This was a particularly prevalent
theme throughout the evaluation and seemed to be one aspect of Crossroads Trust which
people really valued.
“They have given me hope that there is an organisation out there that is real and understands
people in my situation” Client 7 (distance)
“I think the compassion that you can see in the directors is affective” Community member 24
Clients and mentors
As well as clients identifying support received through the Transforming Lives project (as
evidenced under practical, emotional and social support), many of the mentors interviewed
also commented that they had felt highly supported in their roles.
“The support they provide is brilliant, there is always someone to ring if I need to and there is no
time limit or barriers to the support” Mentor 13
“The risk manager is always on the end of the phone and will answer emails you send her on the
same day. She also offers supervision for the mentors.” Mentor 16
“I have felt very supported. The risk manager is there 24/7 when I need her.” Mentor 10

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DEVELOPMENT
The theme of ‘development’ was derived from the sub themes of ‘confidence and selfesteem’, ‘skills’, ‘employability’, ‘opportunities’, and ‘transition from client to mentor’. The
‘development’ theme demonstrates the journey that people involved with Crossroads Trust
have been on and how the Transforming Lives project has enabled both clients and mentors
to develop in a number of ways. The sub themes below evidence the ways in which people
have developed throughout their involvement with Transforming Lives and the impact that
this has had on their lives.
Confidence and self-esteem
Clients consistently identified that working with their mentors helped to improve their
confidence and self-esteem, which has enabled them to achieve their goals. Mentors have
also commented that their own confidence has improved as a result of being a mentor.
“Crossroads have given me the belief and confidence in myself which enabled me to become
self-employed.” Client 1
“I used to have low confidence and low self-esteem and I wouldn’t talk to anyone. Having
responsibility given to me has helped improve my confidence and I am a completely different
person now that I was before I got involved with Crossroads.” Mentor 10
“My mentor gives me more confidence and that helps me immensely.” Client 2
Skills
Both clients and mentors of the Transforming Lives project spoke about how their life skills
had improved as a result of being involved with the project. Development of skills was a
theme that was particularly prevalent among mentors, even for those who already had a
great deal of both professional and personal experience.
“Being re-engaged has oiled my life skills. I revisited things such as safeguarding on the internet
as a result of the training.” Mentor 12
“I have been given responsibilities, helped with my CV and given the encouragement to go back
to university.” Mentor 10
“I have been on a cooking course through the project which meant I could make food for my
friend.” Client 2
“It has helped me to develop my people skills.” Mentor 23

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Employability
Improving employability is another key theme which came across from the interviews for
both clients and mentors. Gaining employment was something which people clearly placed
in high value when speaking about it during interviews and were extremely grateful for the
support they had received which had enabled them to develop in this way.
“I have been able to get a new job through the training.” Mentor 16
“I have my own business now in second hand car sales and I’m willing to help others.” Client 5
“It gives me the experience I need to be able to get a job in the field in future.” Mentor 13
Opportunities
The amount of training available to both clients and mentors was one aspect mentioned by
many of the people interviewed. Other opportunities provided by Transforming Lives were
also identified, such as getting involved in other projects, being part of delivering training,
and being able to use personal or professional experience in the Transforming Lives project.
“It has given me the opportunity to bring skills and experience from work and has given me the
opportunity to work in a way that I wanted to in probation.” Mentor 12
“I am always learning and improving and have taken the opportunity to complete training
when it has been available.” Client 1
“My mentor has helped me with looking for jobs and has also helped me get training.” Client 2
“I have been able to attend lots of different training, both internal and external and get
involved with other projects too.” Mentor 13
Transition from client to mentor
One of the most powerful sub themes within the ‘development’ theme is the transition
from client to mentor. Of the clients and mentors interviewed, two had made the transition
from client to mentor. The sense of achievement that they have gained from this transition
and the impact upon their lives has clearly been significant. The quotes below from these
two individuals really capture this impact.
“I look forward to everything now. I think about what’s happening now and in the future rather
than thinking about the past. I am not sure where I would be now if I hadn’t got involved with
Crossroads.” Mentor 10
“There are no other organisations like Crossroads which help. They have given me the
confidence I needed, especially through becoming a mentor because it meant they trusted me
to work with others. I have more positive self-talk now and have belief in my own ability to help
others.” Mentor 1

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CHANGING PERCEPTIONS
The theme of ‘changing perceptions’ was derived from the sub themes of ‘training’, ‘active
citizens’, ‘increasing understanding’ and, ‘motivation to change’. ‘Changing perceptions’
encompasses the ways in which the Transforming Lives project has had an impact on
changing peoples’ perceptions of ex-offenders, including both community members and
mentors.
Training
The training which has been developed and provided by Transforming Lives has been received
well by many people. Most people who were interviewed had benefitted from training
provided through the Transforming Lives project and it appears that Crossroads Trust have
been keen to promote and provide this training for clients, mentors and community
members. The training not only enabled mentors to feel equipped in their role as peer
mentors but also had an impact on changing peoples’ perceptions of ex-offenders.
“Some of our staff benefitted from training put on by Crossroads and some of this training was
delivered by ex-offenders. This did change staff perceptions of ex-offenders and has enabled
them to work more effectively with some of our young adult clients.” Community member 21
“It is valuable to meet other types of people and the training really shows the importance of not
judging people” Mentor 23
Active citizens
Transforming Lives has been able to work towards changing perceptions of ex-offenders is by
supporting them to become more active citizens within their community. Community
members have evidenced clients of the Transforming Lives project being more active within
the community and this has been seen as a positive by those interviewed.
“I’ve seen the work done in the church garden by the clients and also one of the clients has
helped with designing websites. They have helped put people’s skills to good use.” Community
member 19
“We had a client from Crossroads and their mentor said that they needed help. We helped them
get a debt relief order which has changed their life. She is now doing positive things in the
community.” Community member 20
Increasing understanding
Through the Transforming Lives project, both mentor and community members’
understanding of ex-offenders has increased. This has been facilitated through a range of
different methods including training, publicity and the connections Crossroads Trust have
made with the local community.

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“My personal views on prison and offenders has definitely changed as a result of meeting the
operations manager. I wouldn’t have given them (ex-offenders) the time of day before but I
understand their situation more now.” Community member 18
“It is good quality training and helps give an understanding of where people have come from.”
Mentor 23
“They have very good staff who are good at making links within the community and sustaining
those links. They have definitely made an impact as a new organisation.” Community member
21
“I look at things differently now, I’m not so narrow minded.” Mentor 13
Motivation to change
Clients’ motivation to change for the better was one theme that emerged from interviewing
the clients. Enabling people in the community to see and understand this motivation has the
potential to change perceptions, especially when coupled with evidence of ex-offenders
being more active within the community.
“I want to do it the right way and this is something I worked out in prison.” Client 1
“The operations manager is trying to help people break the cycle and the work he is doing is
wonderful.” Community member 18
“I decided I wanted a different life before my involvement with Crossroads. However, they have
given me hope that there is an organisation out there that is real and understands people in my
situation.” Client 7 (distance)

RESILIENCE
The theme of ‘resilience’ was derived from the sub themes of ‘lack of support from other
organisations’, ‘isolation’, ‘stigma and discrimination’, and ‘overcoming crisis’. This theme
refers to the resilience of both clients and also of Crossroads Trust as an organisation. For
ex-offenders there will be many challenges to overcome in terms of stigma and
discrimination and these challenges have also been true of Crossroads Trust as an
organisation. However, despite the barriers placed in the way of ex-offenders and Crossroads
Trust, they have been resilient and continued to challenge stigma and discrimination and
make positive change.
Lack of support from other organisations
Clients have highlighted having very little support after being released from prison, with
Transforming Lives being the only project which provided them with the support they
needed. Despite having little support, clients have been very resilient and determined to
make positive changes. Transforming Lives has also had a lack of support from some local

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organisations, however, Crossroads Trust have persevered and utilised what support they
have had to overcome this.
“If they (ex-offenders) haven’t got other support as well as what we provide it won’t work so I
can’t see any negatives of working with Crossroads. Some organisations have views on exoffenders though and won’t work with them.” Community member 20
“I have had no help from probation or the job centre but I am very tenacious and will keep
trying.” Client 7 (distance)
“There are no other agencies like Crossroads which help. You don’t get any support from prison
really when you leave.” Client 1
Isolation
A theme among clients was one of being very isolated when leaving prison. Many clients
stated that they did not really have a support network when leaving prison and that this
coupled with the lack of support from services made them feel very isolated. Despite this
isolation and lack of support, clients were still able to find positives and work towards
making changes.
“I feel quite isolated because I’m not in work currently even though I am well educated and have
lots of experience. I have no family so it’s nice just to be able to have a coffee and a conversation
with someone.” Client 7 (distance)
“I came out of prison after 7 ½ years and I had nothing but I’ve always had a positive mental
attitude. Crossroads helped me out with some clothes and gave me someone to talk to.” Client
5
Stigma and discrimination
Clients have highlighted the stigma and discrimination that comes along with having a
criminal conviction. Despite being treated in unfair ways because of their convictions, clients
have still persisted and made positive changes. Crossroads Trust as an organisation has also
faced some of this stigma and discrimination, but this has meant that they have been better
placed to understand how their clients may feel. Despite the barriers faced by Crossroads
Trust they have still been able to make a success of the Transforming Lives project.
“The only negatives of Crossroads come from the discrimination they have faced from other
organisations. If they do move to South Staffordshire as a result of this it will be a real loss
to the area.” Community member 19
“I want an offence free existence but I am tarred with the same brush as everyone else with a
conviction.” Client 7 (distance)
“The internal politics that are causing barriers to organisations like Crossroads need to be
eradicated.” Jonathan Robinson, author and journalist.

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Overcoming crisis
When interviewing clients of the Transforming Lives project, an overwhelming sense of
gratitude was one thing which was particularly prevalent when asking clients about their
experiences of Transforming Lives. This appreciation for the support clients had received was
grown from the fact that before receiving support from Transforming Lives, many clients
were in a state of crisis but Transforming Lives enabled them to overcome this crisis truly
made a difference to their lives.
“If it hadn’t been for Crossroads then I don’t know if I would still be here. Crossroads are the
only people who have ever helped me and I couldn’t believe how helpful they were.” Client 8
(distance)
“I am not sure where I would be now if I hadn’t got involved with Crossroads.” Mentor 10
“Going to Crossroads was a last resort by which I mean the last chance for me to get help. You
struggle without help and that can cause you to re-offend. I am very grateful for them being
there because they have helped a lot.” Client 6 (distance)

PROFESSIONALISM
For an organisation or project to be successful there must be a certain degree of
organisation and professional ability. The feedback gathered in relation to the management
and operational aspects of Transforming Lives and Crossroads Trust has been
overwhelmingly positive, with people stating that Transforming Lives is extremely
professional and the work produced is of a high standard. This feedback provides a good
foundation for the future development of Transforming Lives.
High quality training
Throughout the interviews with clients, mentors and community members many
commented on the quality and effectiveness of the training provided through Transforming
Lives. The mentoring training which they have developed has been accredited by OCN at a
Level 3 standard which demonstrates the credibility of the training. This credibility is further
evidenced by the feedback gained through the evaluation.
“The Crossroads training is one of the best I have been on. It was brilliant. It was received well by
all and made me interested to look things up again.” Mentor 12
“The work produced by the directors and volunteers is of the same standard as we get from
teams with paid staff and that is testament to their dedication and quality of work.”
Community member 21
“The training was really simple. It was a really nice group of people and they made sure that
everyone understood. It was good to hear other people’s experience and the trainers were
approachable.” Mentor 16

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“It is good quality training and helps give an understanding of where people have come from.”
Mentor 23
Commitment and dedication
People interviewed for the purposes of the evaluation communicated that they were really
taken aback by the commitment and dedication of the directors Crossroads Trust. The
commitment and dedication identified is a key strength which has enabled Transforming
Lives to grow and the determination people have seen in the directors is a real asset to
Transforming Lives.
“The amount of hard work they put in is just phenomenal. Not many people could do it how
they do. They are really committed.” Community member 19
“I think that someone who works a night shift then spends the rest of the day volunteering
shows a commitment that I do not witness often.” Community member 24
Competence
Other organisations have commented on the excellent knowledge base and skills of people
within Crossroads Trust. People see the directors as competent and able and have given
extremely positive feedback with regards to how the Transforming Lives project is run.
“It is very professional, they have done their homework and know what they are doing,
especially when it comes to safeguarding.” Community member 18
“The risk manager completes really rigid risk assessments and the whole thing is really well
organised.” Mentor 14
“The staff and directors have a massive amount of skills, experience and passion which comes
across well. I have seen some of the policies they have developed and the organisation is well set
up.” Community member 21
Reliable and efficient
Clients, mentors and community members have commented on the efficiency of
Transforming Lives stating that they always get a quick response from the trust. The sense
that they are ‘always there’ if needed has been prevalent within interviews and this has been
a key aspect of Transforming Lives which is valued highly by people in the community.
“A friend told me about Crossroads so I got in contact with them and they responded instantly
and helped me straight away.” Client 6 (distance)
“The operations manager and risk manager are always in close contact. We just have to pick up
the phone and they will help. They are professional.” Community member 20
“I can always get hold of them when I need them.” Client 1

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6.2 QUANTITATIVE ANALYSIS
A Likert scale questionnaire was used in addition to interview questions with clients to
assess the extent to which the desired outcomes of the Transforming Lives project had been
met. The graph below shows the average client score for each question in the scale.

Table 1 provides a key for the average score to the corresponding Likert scale indicator and
table 2 provides a key for the question numbers to the corresponding statements used in the
questionnaire. As can be seen in the graph, clients gave high scores on all questions with the
average responses being either ‘somewhat agree’, ‘agree’ or ‘strongly agree’. These responses
provide good evidence for the effectiveness of the Transforming Lives project and the
positive impact which it has had on clients’ lives.
The questions which clients gave the average response of either ‘agree’ or ‘strongly agree’
were mostly centred around the support provided to the client by their mentor and how this
support enabled clients to overcome problems and make positive changes. Clients also felt
that the project was well organised which demonstrates the strength of the operational
aspects of the project. Questions to which clients responded ‘somewhat agree’ were mostly
related to the development of skills and improving employability. A reason for this is that

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some of the clients interviewed has accessed the project from a distance and were therefore
unable to attend training opportunities provided by the Transforming Lives project. Also,
some of the clients already had a lot of life and
employment experience and therefore this was
not an area which they felt that they needed
support in developing. Clients did also with
‘somewhat agree’ to the question relating to
likelihood of re-offending. Clients generally said
they gave this response because they had already
made the decision that they did not want to reoffend before being involved with the
Transforming Lives project. Accessing the
Transforming Lives project was a step that many
clients had taken to help them achieve their goal
of desisting from re-offending.

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7. RESULTS
From the data gathered by interviewing clients, mentors and community members and also
through the Likert scale questionnaire completed by clients it is clear that the Transforming
Lives project has been exceptionally well received by those who it has worked with. It has
evidently had a genuinely positive impact on peoples’ lives and made a real difference. The
success of the Transforming Lives project will be further explored in the discussion however,
this section of the evaluation aims to establish whether the project has answered the
evaluation questions set out at the beginning of the evaluation. The questions in relation to
clients, mentors and community members are explored below.

7.1 CLIENT QUESTIONS
Has the Transforming Lives project reduced the likelihood of clients re-offending?
All of the clients interviewed in the evaluation had desisted from re-offending and there was
a clear motivation from clients to maintain an offence-free lifestyle. Clients also gave the
average response of ‘somewhat agree’ when asked whether they felt that the Transforming
Lives project had reduced their likelihood of re-offending. What emerged when asking clients
about re-offending was that many had made the decision to change whilst they were in
prison and their involvement with the Transforming Lives project was a step they had taken
in order to obtain support in desisting from re-offending. Therefore the support provided to
clients through the Transforming Lives project has reduced the likelihood of clients reoffending.
“I decided I wanted a different life before my involvement with Crossroads. However, they have
given me hope that there is an organisation out there that is real and understands people in my
situation.” Client 7 (distance)
Have clients been provided with the support needed to reintegrate into the community
and to be more active within their community?
The average response by clients to the statement ‘since my involvement with the
Transforming Lives project I feel that I am more active within my community’ was ‘agree’.
Evidence that the Transforming Lives project has achieved this outcome also came from the
interviews conducted with clients. Clients highlighted that they have felt highly supported
by the Transforming Lives project.
There are no other agencies like Crossroads which help. You don’t get any support from prison
really when you leave.” Client 1
Has the support received by clients been tailored to their needs?
All clients strongly agreed with the statement ‘the support I have received has been tailored
to my needs’. Therefore it is clear that clients have felt that the support has been tailored to

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their needs. Jonathon Robinson (author and journalist) also commented that Crossroads
Trust “have a much more bespoke approach compared to the one size fits all service provided by
other organisations”.
Have mentors been positive role models for clients?
All clients also strongly agreed that their mentor had been a positive role model which
provides evidence that the Transforming Lives project has met this outcome.
Has the Transforming Lives project supported clients to achieve outcomes in relation
to: improved life skills, positive thinking, financial capability, employment,
qualifications and training?
In terms of positive thinking, on average clients agreed that their thinking had been more
positive since being involved with the Transforming Lives project. The Transforming Lives
project has also supported clients in improving their life skills, financial capability and
employability as well as providing opportunities for clients to access training and gain
qualifications. Evidence of these outcomes has been presented through the model
developed from the interview data and the qualitative analysis section provides support for
this through quotes from the interviews.
What factors contribute to successful outcomes for clients?
Factors which have contributed to successful outcomes for clients have been highlighted in
the Transforming Lives model of analysis. Particular aspects of the Transforming Lives
project which were highly valued by clients were:
1. Nature of the support – the support provided to clients was dynamic in that it
addressed practical, emotional and social issues. Clients felt that this support was
not available anywhere else.
2. Nature of the mentors – clients highlighted that they felt that their mentors
really understood their situation (due to many of the mentors being peer mentors).
They also felt that they were genuine, real people.
3. Confidence and self-esteem – the support clients received enabled them to
improve their confidence and self-esteem which made them feel empowered to
make positive changes.
4. Opportunities – the Transforming Lives project provided clients with
opportunities which enabled them to develop their skills and employability.
5. Operation – clients experienced the Transforming Lives project as being
professionally run and saw mentors and directors as competent. The reliability and
efficiency of the project was one aspect highlighted by clients as being extremely
helpful.

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7.2 MENTOR QUESTIONS
Have mentors been given sufficient training to be able to fulfil their role?
‘High quality training’ was one sub-theme which emerged from the thematic analysis of the
interview data. All mentors interviewed felt that the training had thoroughly prepared them
for their role and this is evidenced within the qualitative analysis.
“It is good quality training and helps give an understanding of where people have come from.”
Mentor 23
Have mentors been provided with appropriate support within their role?
‘Support’ not only for clients, but also for mentors was a key theme which emerged from the
qualitative analysis. During the interviews mentors spoke about how they felt extremely
supported in their role and that there is always someone available for them to contact if
they need support.
“The risk manager is always on the end of the phone and will answer emails you send her on the
same day. She also offers supervision for the mentors.” Mentor 16
Has being a mentor for the Transforming Lives project enabled mentors to achieve
outcomes in relation to: improved life skills, positive thinking, confidence,
employment, qualifications and training?
In relation to qualifications and training, all mentors commented on the vast amount of
training opportunities (both internal and external) that had been made available to them
through the Transforming Lives project. They also commented on the amount of certificates
and qualifications they had obtained as a result of the training. In terms of employment,
training to be a mentor actually enabled one mentor to get a new job and inspired another
to set up her own business. Other mentors also commented on how the Transforming Lives
project has helped improve their life skills which has helped with their employability by
given them the skills and experience they need for work. Finally in terms of positive thinking,
mentors spoke very positively about their experiences of the Transforming Lives project and
how it has given them something to look forward to. Therefore, the Transforming Lives
project has achieved all the outcomes for mentors in relation to improved life skills, positive
thinking, employment, qualifications and training.
“I have been able to attend lots of different training, both internal and external and get
involved with other projects too.” Mentor 13
“I have been able to get a new job through the training.” Mentor 16
“I have been given responsibilities, helped with my CV and given the encouragement to go back
to university.” Mentor 10

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Has the mentoring training been evaluated and accredited?
The mentoring training has been accredited by OCN Credit4Learning through Amersham
and Wycombe College. The training comprises of distinct units and gives learners a level 3
qualification once they have completed. The fact that the training has been accredited
demonstrates the professionalism of the Transforming Lives project and means that the
training they provide is credible. Crossroads Trust overall operations is also accredited by the
Mentoring and Befriending Foundation which means its governance and safeguarding
systems are robust and allowing the Transforming Lives Project to be facilitated in a safe
environment for all those involved with the Project.

7.3 COMMUNITY QUESTIONS
Has Crossroads Trust made connections with organisations, employers and the
community which will benefit clients accessing the Transforming Lives project?
Through the Transforming Lives project, Crossroads Trust have clearly made many positive
connections with local organisations which has enabled clients to access the support that
they need. The feedback from organisations has been extremely positive and the only
negatives have come from the discrimination Crossroads Trust has faced by some
organisations, in particular the Criminal Justice Agencies in Warwickshire.
“They have very good staff who are good at making links within the community and sustaining
those links. They have definitely made an impact as a new organisation.” Community member
21
Have the links which Crossroads Trust have made with organisations, employers and
the community had an impact on people’s perceptions and/or reducing discrimination
of people with criminal convictions?
Many of the people interviewed commented on how their personal perceptions of exoffenders have changed since being involved with the Transforming Lives project and one of
the key themes which emerged from the qualitative analysis was ‘changing perceptions’.
Organisations have also commented on how the training has changed the perceptions of
staff members which has enabled them to better support ex-offenders who they work with.
“My personal views on prison and offenders has definitely changed as a result of meeting the
operations manager. I wouldn’t have given them (ex-offenders) the time of day before but I
understand their situation more now.” Community member 18
Have clients become more active citizens within their community as a result of their
involvement with the Transforming Lives project?
Clients themselves have commented on how they have become more active citizens since
their involvement with the Transforming Lives project. Community members from local
organisations have corroborated this and provided further evidence for the fact that the
Transforming Lives project is enabling clients to be more active within their communities.

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“I’ve seen the work done in the church garden by the clients and also one of the clients has
helped with designing websites. They have helped put people’s skills to good use.” Community
member 19
How has the Transforming Lives project been managed and operated?
Clients, mentors and community members have all commented on the efficiency of the
Transforming Lives project and one of the key themes from the thematic analysis is
‘professionalism’. Community members have clearly evidenced the high standards of work
produced through the Transforming Lives project and the competency of the directors who
manage the project.
“The operations manager and risk manager are always in close contact. We just have to pick up
the phone and they will help. They are professional.” Community member 20

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8. DISCUSSION
The results of the evaluation have shown that the Transforming Lives project has been able
to answer all of the evaluation questions and has met the outcomes which it outlined in the
project brief and funding application. The experiences of all those involved with the
Transforming Lives project have been overwhelmingly positive and it is clearly a needed
service within its area of operation as well as further afield. The evaluation of the
Transforming Lives project provides further evidence in support of peer mentoring and
demonstrates how effective it can be. Therefore the findings of the evaluation are in line
with the current literature surrounding the effectiveness of peer mentoring.
The model which was able to be generated from the qualitative analysis makes a good
contribution in terms of being able to understand the process of peer mentoring. The model
encompasses the multiple factors needed for a peer mentoring project to be successful. Due
to the success of the Transforming Lives project, it is difficult to make recommendations in
terms of how the project could be improved. This is particularly true in the case of
Transforming Lives as many of the barriers which have been faced have been due to the
discrimination and lack of co-operation from other organisations; for example, the project
did not receive as many referrals as planned due to this lack of co-operation.
Although the project has been highly successful and the feedback absolutely positive, there
are some areas of development which can be considered. Some of these areas have been
highlighted in the literature review in terms of looking at what factors are needed to make
peer mentoring successful. The Transforming Lives project already possesses many of these
qualities, and this has been evidenced through the analysis. However, some additional areas
for development are highlighted in the recommendations below.

8.1 RECOMMENDATIONS
1. Expand the area of operation
Given the success of the project and the clear need for the service which has been identified,
in order to support more clients in future the project needs to expand to be able to take
referrals from a wider area. The Transforming Lives project has successfully supported some
clients from a distance, however, expanding the project so that more people can access the
full service provided by the project would mean more people could be supported to a greater
extent.
2. Build relationships with Criminal Justice Agencies and Community Safety
Partnerships
The discrimination faced by the Transforming Lives project from some organisations is
utterly unacceptable. However, as highlighted in the first recommendation referrals are
essential for the project to be sustainable. Therefore, if expanding the area of operation
means that support can be gained from criminal justice agencies outside of Warwickshire

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across the Warwickshire borders then this would be a positive step for the Transforming
Lives project. As highlighted in the literature review, working in partnership with criminal
justice agencies is a factor which significantly contributes to the success of peer mentoring
interventions.
3. Develop the scope of ‘through the gate’ mentoring
As identified in the literature review, mentoring is most effective when it is ‘through the
gate’. Mentoring that begins in prison will enable the ex-offender to feel supported though
the whole process of being released into the community. Some of the mentoring undertaken
through the Transforming Lives project has been ‘through the gate’, with clients finding the
project through prison newspaper articles. If relationships are built with criminal justice
agencies outside of Warwickshire then this will enable the scope for effective ‘through the
gate’ mentoring to expand through the Transforming Lives project.
4. Continue to monitor and evaluate progress
Monitoring and evaluating progress, as the Transforming Lives project has been doing, is key
for the sustainability of mentoring projects. Monitoring progress will ensure that the
operation of the project is remaining as efficient as possible and evaluation will help to
highlight areas for development in order to take the project forwards. Evaluation will also
help to evidence the valuable work being done through the Transforming Lives project which
will help obtain future funding to sustain the project.
5. Develop and market the training package
The accredited training provided through the Transforming Lives project is clearly of a high
standard and has received overwhelmingly positive feedback. The training package could be
marketed to and bought in by other organisations and this would provide income to assist
with the running and development of the Transforming Lives project.
6. Develop training for new mentoring organisations
Given the success of the accredited model used in the Transforming Lives project, another
way the project could be developed is to formally develop the model of operation and then
market this to new mentoring organisations. Again, providing training on the operational
aspects of running a mentoring project would provide income to assist with the running and
development of the Transforming Lives project.

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8.2 CONCLUSION
Overall the Transforming Lives project has been extremely successful and The Crossroads
Trust Board of Directors and mentoring team should be very proud of what they have
achieved. It is hard to get across in words the sheer impact of the project upon peoples’ lives,
but hopefully the voices of clients which are echoed throughout the evaluation have gone
some way in expressing this. There is a clear need for the unique service which the
Transforming Lives project provides, and as has been said by clients, mentors and
community members if it hadn’t been for Transforming Lives many people simply would not
have been able to access the support which they so desperately needed.
The Transforming Lives project needs to keep operating with the commitment and
dedication that is has done over the past year. People are reliant on Transforming Lives and
the genuine, real people who are at the heart of the project are something which clients
have expressed is found nowhere else. Despite the great distance that Transforming Lives
has come, it is still only at the start of its journey. There is clear scope for development of
the project and as it develops it will make an even more significant impact to many more
peoples’ lives. In conclusion, the Transforming Lives project has had tremendous success so
far and has the potential to become the benchmark for peer mentoring of ex-offenders.

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9. REFERENCES
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Braun, V. and Clarke, V. (2006) Using thematic analysis in psychology. Qualitative Research
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Celinska, K. (2000) Volunteer involvement in ex-offenders’ readjustment: reducing the
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Clinks and Mentoring Befriending Foundation. (2012) Supporting offenders through
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Finnegan, L., Whitehurst, D., and Deaton, S. (2010) Models of mentoring for inclusion and
employment: thematic review of existing evidence on mentoring and peer mentoring.
London: Centre for Economic and Social Inclusion
Fletcher, D., R. and Batty, E. (2012) Offender Peer Interventions: What do we know?
Sheffield: Sheffield Hallam University.
Huggins, R. (2010) Mentoring for progression: prison mentoring project – assessing
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Joliffe, D., and Farrington, D. (2007) A rapid evidence assessment of the impact of
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18th August 2015]
Kavanagh, L. and Borrill, J. (2013) Exploring the experiences of ex-offender mentors.
Probation Journal: The Journal of Community and Criminal Justice, 60 (4): 400-414
Mentoring and Befriending Foundation. (2014) What is mentoring and befriending?
[online]. Available from: http://www.mandbf.org/mbf-membership/what-is-mentoringand-befriending [Accessed 18th August 2015]
Ministry of Justice. (2013) Transforming Rehabilitation: a summary of evidence on
reducing reoffending [online]. Available from: https://www.gov.uk/government/
publications/transforming-rehabilitation-a-summary-of-evidence-on-reducingreoffending [Accessed 20th August 2015]

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Philip, K., and Hendry, L. (2000) Making sense of mentoring or mentoring making sense?
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Community and Applied Social Psychology, 10: 211-223
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site.stgilestrust.org.uk/what-we-do/reports-and-evaluations-into-st-giles-trust [Accessed
20th August 2015]
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Juvenile Delinquency and Associated Problems. Chicago: The Campbell Collaboration
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Wadia, A. and Parkinson, D. (2015) The informal mentoring project: a process evaluation.
London: National Offender Management Service

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Report: Transforming Lives Project Evaluation

APPENDICIES

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Report: Transforming Lives Project Evaluation

APPENDIX A 

EVALUATION OF THE TRANSFORMING

CONSENT STATEMENT

LIVES PROJECT INFORMATION
My name is Rachel Egginton and I am a MA
Social Work student from the University of
Birmingham. I am currently undertaking an
independent evaluation of the Transforming
Lives project run by the Crossroads Trust.
This evaluation will involve speaking to
clients, mentors, directors and other agencies
who have been involved with the project to
gain information about their experiences of
the project and producing a written report
based on this information. The purpose of the
evaluation is to find out whether the project
has met its objectives and to gain people’s
experience of the project including any areas
which could be improved upon.
Participation in the evaluation will involve
completing a short interview and possibly a
short questionnaire relating to your
experiences of involvement with the project.
Participation is voluntary and if you do wish to
participate then all data used within the
evaluation will be kept anonymous and will
not be used for any other purposes. If at any
time you wish to withdraw your involvement in
the evaluation, including your data being
removed from the evaluation, then you have
the right to do so. There will be the
opportunity to ask any questions you may
have about the evaluation both before and
after taking part in the evaluation.

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If after reading the information above, and
asking any questions, you would like to
participate in the evaluation then please sign
below. By signing this consent form you are
confirming that you have read and understood
the information provided about the evaluation
and that you wish to participate in the
evaluation. You are also giving permission for
your data to be used in the evaluation, although
you do have the right to withdraw this data at
any time.
Signed ________________________________
Name _________________________________
Date___________________________________


Report: Transforming Lives Project Evaluation

APPENDIX B

APPENDIX B CONTINUED OVER PAGE

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Report: Transforming Lives Project Evaluation

APPENDIX B CONTINUED

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Report: Transforming Lives Project Evaluation

APPENDIX C

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