In prison, with little or no contact outside, people often feel hopeless and friendless and as though there is nothing for them.

New Bridge befriending gives people that hope and optimism that there is a future.  It helps people to feel valued and appreciated despite what they have done.  It provides the chance to look towards living a life differently, setting goals and aspirations.

M** in his recent letters has started to talk about his future and is looking into programs he could go in

Through writing letters and visiting, New Bridge befriending gives a hand of friendship that enables people to feel connected and provides them with a sense of identity and belonging.  Strong friendships have a positive effect on health – contributing to lower risks of physical disease and increasing self belief and self esteem.

My experiences since writing to my friend are amazing because it shows that people outside prison look beyond the inmate façade and see a real person. I see New Bridge more as a link to the outside world for people who have nobody.  It changes people’s lives in many many ways.  It’s helped me to see the light at the end of the tunnel knowing that my friend has been there for me while I’m inside but will be there for me also when I get out

New Bridge befriending helps people to trust, sometimes for the first time, and in turn to become more trustworthy; it is non-judgemental and impartial, enabling people to be themselves,  to learn and understand themselves.

I had taken courage to write and look for a friend who would be non judgemental but a person I can trust to be able to be open about my thoughts and feelings.  My friendship and feeling of support and care has developed when I have in the past felt as no one would want to support me because of my offending.  This has helped me to develop trusting others as I find my way and work on myself to change my self defeating behaviour.  My friend is very supportive and encouraging and she’s very supportive of the work I am doing to change and learn important things about myself