HMP Grendon, HMP Springhill, HMP Woodhill & HMYOI, Aylesbury plus HMPPS and TVCRC’s working in Milton Keynes and Buckinghamshire have been putting measures in place to safe guard their prisoners, ex-offenders and staff. Where BACO can we are operating remotely and still able to respond to requests for support.
It will be a difficult time for all charities, BACO is fortunate in that it does not have any salaried staff. We rely on the generosity of people who care about rehabilitation of offenders and we would urge you to donate to our work by going to our Just Giving button on the home page of this website.
We would like to express our admiration for all Prison staff, officers, health workers, chaplaincy teams etc who are caring for those in their charge and doing the very best they can in extremely challenging times.
Prof Ruth Farwell, BACO’s Prisoner Support Volunteer and Educational and Training Lead responded to a request from staff at HMP Grendon to help during the Covid-19 Lock down. In collaboration with James at Ikon Gallery BACO donated £216 to benefit all residents on all the wings
“I would like to thank you both again for the purchase of the sketchbooks and canvases for all wings at Grendon, they have all now been collected and have been very gratefully received by all. I have heard that the majority of the canvases are being worked on towards some collective community based art which is great, and that the sketchbooks are being used as creative journals, amongst other things.”
HMP Grendon Creative Psychotherapist
The residents at HMP Grendon generously make donations to charity. In February 2020 the community on F Wing nominated BACO as a charity to receive sponsorship and on their initiative have raised funds from the residents on other wings. The donations mean so much particularly as the residents often have very little money in their accounts but nevertheless want to acknowledge their appreciation of BACO and help BACO support others. A massive thank you for £55.00 which arrived this week.
Cell Workout at HMP Woodhill
On Monday 24th February 2020 LJ Flanders and colleagues James & Joe held a Cell Work Out ‘taster session’ in the gym at HMP Woodhill. Twenty plus men attended to experience the workout routines devised by LJ during his sentence at HMP Pentonville. At times being confined to his cell for 23 hours a day, LJ recognised the importance of keeping fit in both body and mind, determined not to waste his time whilst ‘doing time’ he enrolled on a personal training course in Pentonville. This not only gave him the fundamental understanding of how to construct the varied workout routines, it also offered a higher chance of employment following his release. Once qualified LJ got a job in the prison gym and was often being asked if he could write personalised fitness regimes that could be performed in a cell.
Upon release LJ wrote Cell WorkOut and now regularly visits Prisons to encourage men to get fit and to talk about about how he has turned his life around.
BACO is delighted to have been able to sponsor LJ Flanders’ taster session in both HMYOI, Aylesbury and in HMP Woodhill.
30th March 2020 LJ Flanders launched crowd funding initiative click here to find out more
Many congratulations to all winners in this years Koestler Arts awards
Six Book Challenge with the Reading Agency
Six Book Challenge with the Reading Agency in HMP Grendon . BACO supports this initiative by providing prizes for those completing the challenge of reading six books and keeping a diary of what they have read.
On December 11th 2019 BACO trustees and members enjoyed listening to conversations between Louise Candlish and residents before presenting prizes to all those who had completed the Six Book Challenge. We are very grateful to the Head Librarian Debra Lovell and Coles Books of Bicester for providing the prizes.
Further presentations of prizes took place week commencing March 2nd 2020 when Debra invited BACO members to Grendon.
BACO mascots Mabel and Mavis (miniature Mediterranean donkeys) loved meeting the prisoners families at HMP Springhill in December 2019 before two performances of the men’s original pantomime.