Courses we Deliver
With thanks to outside funding from Porticus we are soon to be delivering an OCN accredited 3 day course on Positive Relationships. This course will be for prisoners AND their partners together before release. This will enable better communication between couples, new skills for relating to each other, and increasing chances for a happier outcome for families after he is released from HMP Leeds.
For 3 days over 3 weeks prisoners and their partners can learn together in the Education area of HMP Leeds. Both will receive a Level 1 qualification in Family Relationships (Open College Network) and support from Jigsaw staff.
This is a chance for couples to get together to talk over real issues that are specific for them in a controlled and supported environment.
The report of the course is here:
Positive relationships course report (downloads a PDF file, 36kb.
Please contact for more info.
Click here for more details/application form (downloads a PDF file. 166kb) or email .
Relationships Without Violence
A 3 day accredited course with 4 support sessions for prisoners who self-identify with domestic violence issues. Based on the Duluth Model, the exercises in the course focus on underlying beliefs, power, control and personal motivation for change. Prisoners are monitored after release through phone contact and can get support and signposting. The course tutors are trained in domestic violence and in group facilitation and will be working to get offenders to accept responsibility and move towards change.
Prisoners with less than 6 months who have a genuine desire to change are prioritised for this course.
Fathers Inside is a 4 week long intensive course for prisoners around parenting skills. Prisoners learn through drama and group work how to take responsibility for their parenting and to develop as Fathers. This course has been delivered across a number of prisons to very positive outcomes.
The imprisoned parent records a story and a message which is then edited and enhanced using digital audio software. Ours editors remove mistakes and add sound effects and music. Finally the CD is burned off, a personalised cover is created and the finished disc is sent to the child.
Pregnancy, Birth & Beyond project brief
Jigsaw in partnership with the NSPCC Leeds and HMP Leeds is running an innovative 'Pregnancy, Birth and Beyond' project within HMP Leeds for prisoners and their pregnant partners.
'Pregnancy, Birth and Beyond' is an innovative antenatal education programme for vulnerable and at-risk parents. It helps get parents off to the best start, supporting them to give good care to their babies and successfully make the transition to parenthood.
Pregnancy is a time when most parents – including those seen as disengaged or hard to reach – are receptive to offers of support. It is a fantastic opportunity to help set the template for effective parenting.
Aim of the service
This programme reaches those parents who most need support. It provides them with information, practical help and a network of supportive relationships, and uses a range of techniques to engage meaningfully with parents and nurture healthy relationships.
The programme is based on the Department of Health's latest framework for antenatal education, and has been welcomed by the Department.
What happens during the programme?
The programme will focus on the transition to parenthood, the relationship between parents and the development of a positive relationship between parent and child. This will be done over eight sessions, under the following themes:
- our baby's development
- changes for me and us
- giving birth and meeting our baby
- caring for our baby
- our health and well-being
- people who are there for us
The programme will start around the 28th week of pregnancy and will consist of six sessions before birth, and two sessions following the birth.
This is a pilot programme, which will be evaluated to help us understand the best ways to support vulnerable parents during the antenatal period.
April 10th to 13th April 2012
The Jigsaw Visitors Centre in partnership with HMP Leeds and Pandemonium Theatre Company developed and delivered an innovative drama project for 7 prisoners and their children (13 in total). This type of project was a first for HMP Leeds and possibly a first for any prison within the whole prison service. The project involved prisoners and their children spending a week together developing, rehearsing and finally performing to an audience of their families, guest from the community and governors of HMP Leeds.
Jigsaw is HMP Leeds' main partner in the delivery of Outcome 4 "Improving and Maintaining Family Ties". Jigsaw has taken the lead in delivering family centred approaches which put an offender's families at the centre of the rehabilitation process.
Although the course was only 1 week long we believe the experience of children working with their parents on a shared project has a longer lasting legacy. Parental involvement in children's education has a significant positive effect on children's achievement even after all other factors have been taken out of the equation. Involving the children and parents least likely to engage in such family learning due to incarceration offers families the chance to experience education in a positive format that will hopefully have an impact post-release on all parties.
Using drama for these projects brings structured, focused and clearly defined educational methods to people whose lives are often unfocused and unstructured. Arts and drama activities encourage 'meta-cognition' – thinking about thinking, which has proven benefits in helping people to manage and change their behaviour. Making things and acting things out is also an accessible and provably effective way for people to understand and manage their emotions better.
A 30 – 40 minutes long DVD was produced and included the following: rehearsals, interview with prisoners and the final performance.(back to top of page)