A north east university has launched a partnership with a youth offending team (YOT), which provides valuable experience for students and improved services for young people. 16/08/2012
The move is the first of its kind in the UK and could see similar partnerships flourish in other regions.
Northumbria University's department of social sciences has teamed up with Newcastle YOT, helping evaluate the local youth offending work and hosting a mentoring project, as reported by Children & Young People Now .
Through the project, selected students receive training in child protection, safeguarding and youth justice before working as mentors to young people, helping them through their community orders.
Senior lecturer in criminology at Northumbria University, Sarah Soppitt, called the move 'quite a ground-breaking way of working'.
She also stated that the YOT has been informally working with the university for four years, but the partnership was now officially recognised.
A report published in 2011 by Her Majesty's Inspector of Probation, the Care Quality Commission, Estyn, Healthcare Inspectorate Wales and Ofsted, reflected on the strong work the scheme was doing, stating that 'strong relationships developed as young people found it helpful to be able to work with people of roughly the same age'.
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