Handshake not handout.
We are not going to do things to people or for people, but with them, as equals.
Only Connect is an innovative criminal justice charity with a mission to help people lead crime-free lives. We provide “Through the Gate” key-working support for prisoners and ex-prisoners: one-to-one support sessions with a focus on employment, education and training.
As our name indicates, we recognise that relationships are crucial in reducing reoffending. The key-working approach is successful because of the relationship of trust and respect developed through the continuous, holistic support our key-workers offer.
In our King’s Cross centre we run a music programme that encourages respectful collaboration. Most young people taking part in the programme have been involved in gangs. Our aim is to help them develop as artists move away from violent lyrics and ultimately break the cycle of anti-social behaviour.
Only Connect Under Lockdown
Our key workers continue to offer regular support via phone and email. Practical support via phone and email might include: advice, writing and editing of CVs, disclosure letters and job/course applications.
For New Referrals
Only Connect, as always, is looking forward to receiving new referrals. A key worker will be attributed to each new member. Initially, key workers and members will work on identifying the type of support that is essential to each individual and tailor it accordingly, before properly meeting face-to-face once the crisis is over.
This will be a time of creativity: coming up with new ideas, writing lyrics, finding new beats. Our music lead Timothy Titsworth is consulting with members and giving them direction via regular virtual meetups. Most importantly an exciting new project is in development that will possibly include a mixtape created through virtual collaboration.
Our music programme centres on the development of project management skills through music production and the business of music. The project is led by Timothy Titsworth who has written and produced several pieces of music for film and television and has collaborated with some of the biggest names in the music industry. Members have the opportunity to write, record and perform musical pieces, gain music production tech skills, engage collaboratively with other artists and learn facets of music promotion and marketing.
Our music programme consists of two pathways. In the first pathway, members have regular one-to-one sessions with Tim in our fully equipped music studio. In the second pathway, they participate in a workshop called “Rhythms and Flow” in which they collaborate with other artists. With the completion of “Rhythms and Flow” participants receive a BTEC certificate which increases their employability. At the end of each “Rhythms and Flow” cycle, participants organise a showcase where they share their work with other Only Connect members, staff and often an audience. All OC members can partake in either one or both pathways.