Clinks is delighted to announce the launch of the first phase of our Stronger voice training programme. This forms a key part of Clinks’ Stronger voice project, funded by Lloyds Bank Foundation for England and Wales, as part of its wider Criminal Justice Grant Programme. This blog sets out what you can expect from the programme and how you can sign up.
Stronger voice training programme
Stronger voice is a three-year project, aimed at helping the voluntary sector working in criminal justice to develop a unified and influential voice, at both a national and regional level.
The Stronger voice training programme is a core part of this. We are bringing together a range of expert training providers across policy, campaigns and communications to support organisations of all sizes to influence decision makers.
We know how diverse the criminal justice system is and have developed the training programme with this in mind - aiming to provide modules suitable for organisations right at the beginning of their policy influencing work, to those who are more advanced and have been undertaking this work for a number of years. We hope the training programme has something for everyone.
Finding your voice
The first phase of the training programme, ‘Finding your voice’ is aimed largely at organisations at the very beginning of their influencing journey, those who rarely engage with policy and want to learn how they can influence decision makers.
These events are now live for organisations to book onto (please click on each event for more information):
- Introduction to reframing | Liz Kearsley | 21st September
- Introduction to parliament (England) | The Parliamentary Outreach Team | 22nd September
- Introduction to parliament (Wales) | The Parliamentary Outreach Team | 30th September
- Introduction to campaigning | Sheila McKechnie Foundation | 29th September
- Influencing locally | Sheila McKechnie Foundation | 12th October
- Introduction to influencing policy | Gemma Buckland | 21st October
All the events are free and will be run online. They are open to any voluntary organisation working in the criminal justice system, though each event has a different capacity of attendee numbers to ensure the training is effective. Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis, subject to eligibility and availability, though Clinks will reserve specific spaces for organisations working with people in contact with the criminal justice system that are led by and focussed on racially minoritised people.
Expert seminars and other opportunities
Into next year, we will launch phase two and three of the Stronger voice training programme, including increasingly advanced training to organisations already active in policy influencing. This will include opportunities to receive ad-hoc expert support to put your learning into practice. We will also explore repeating introductory events from phase one if there is sufficient demand.
There will be many other opportunities for organisations to benefit from the Stronger voice project too. For example, we will run a programme of online expert seminars to share good practice across the sector and help organisations generate ideas for where they can have greater influence. Earlier this year, we heard from Prison Reform Trust and Unlock about their approaches to influencing policy as well as from our own policy team about Clinks’ work.
Nacro and Switchback will run the next expert seminar later this year (date to be confirmed) on how they use evidence from their front line services to inform their policy influencing work. They will specifically reflect on the recent increase in the discharge grant as an example of how voluntary sector campaigning can achieve big changes.
We will be promoting all future opportunities on our website and in Light Lunch so keep an eye out for further information. If you have any questions about the project or would like to learn more please do get in touch with Will Downs, Senior Policy Officer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Latest on Twitter
.@hibiscuscharity have launched a report - funded by Clinks - which explores the complex issues faced by Black, minoritised and migrant women in contact with the CJS and the resulting impacts on their mental health.
Read the report here: https://hibiscusinitiatives.org.uk/media/2023/06/rmc-mental-health-report-document.pdf