Meet Ailsa, one of our volunteer mentors

It really does make a difference.

I’ve always had a passion for helping people. That’s why I wanted to volunteer with Pact. I really wanted to help people with direct experience of the criminal justice system to make positive changes in their life. Being a mentor is an amazing opportunity to do this, and it makes a real difference.

Volunteering as a Pact mentor means I’ve been able to help women in prison prepare for their release by discussing what will happen when they get home and anything that they’re worried about. I’ve been able to talk to them about how to get support with things like parenting and finding somewhere to live, and help them find out about meetings they can go to if they’re struggling with drug or alcohol addiction. It can be really tough for both men and women in prison to cope with things like this so having a mentor to help them can really make a difference, especially for people who don’t have any family support.

I’ve also had the chance to work with people in the community which has been very rewarding. I’ve been able to help men access counselling and support to get back into education or employment, which really helps them build confidence and can help to reduce reoffending.

I’ve always felt safe working in both prisons and the community because of all the training and help I’ve had from my Pact colleagues. Working for Pact is both rewarding and enjoyable and I would encourage people to apply if they have an interest in helping people to support themselves and move forward with their lives. It really does make a difference.

If you want to find out more about Ailsa's role or if you have any questions about volunteering with Pact, get in touch with us on [email protected].