Heading Home Volunteer

  • Family Support Volunteer
  • HMP Holme House Visitor Centre
  • Nepacs

Introduction to Heading Home:

Heading Home is a project that has
been designed to help prisoners and their families prepare for release. The
periods of release and resettlement can be a challenging time for families,
often because family members have different expectations and concerns about how
life will be once their relative has left prison.

The project offers support to families
through two interventions. The first intervention is a listening and
signposting service called Re:Settle and is supported by an informative booklet
which offers families guidance and useful information on how the whole family
can prepare for release. The second intervention, Re: Connect, is a group programme
that will be delivered in prison with prisoners and will involve families attending a meeting with
their relative in the prison. The purpose of the meeting is to give families
the opportunity to discuss concerns and expectations around the release, and to
work together on how they can overcome these challenges.

General overview of role:
Volunteers in this role will offer 1:1 support, information and guidance to
families of prisoners who are preparing for release. The volunteer will be offering a listening
ear and emotional support as well as signposting people to other agencies, and offering
some practical support.

In the prison, volunteers will co-facilitate
a group programme and also arrange and facilitate meetings between prisoners
and their families to discuss release and resettlement. This element of the
project will require specialist training which will be provided by Nepacs. Due
to the specialist training that is required for this role, volunteers are asked
to commit weekly or fortnightly though we would hope that some volunteers would
have some flexibility so that the project is able to respond to the needs of
the service users.


Prison, Family Support, programme, information, support and guidance, signposting


Tasks will include:

• Disseminate Re:settle booklets to prisoners who have been identified as coming up for release

• To facilitate the Heading Home Re:connect sessions to a group of prisoners to help them to prepare for their release, with a focus on family relationships and their role within that family

• To facilitate meetings between prisoners and their families as part of the Heading Home Re:connect sessions, to allow the family to talk openly and honestly about their fears and expectations of the prisoners release

• To research information about local support services for families

• To offer practical guidance in accessing support from other agencies and organisations

• To keep accurate records of work completed

Knowledge & Skills

Skills required:




Well developed communication skills

Understanding of confidentiality

Understanding of professional boundaries

Ability to write up brief
but clear case notes

Empathy with prisoners families serving the ‘hidden sentence’

Ability to listen actively and to empathise

Calm and positive in their approach

Ability to work individually but also contribute to the team

-Public transport costs or mileage up to 22 mile radius at 40p per mile.

Training and support:

-Initial project induction and training

-Level 1 Safeguarding training 

-Invite to Nepacs Generic induction

-Volunteer meetings are held at regular intervals throughout the year

-Nepacs offer a training day for all volunteers annually

-Volunteers are eligible to attend some prison organised training

Volunteers can expect:

-Support from staff

-Training opportunities

-Invitation to volunteer meetings

-Recognition of their work

General Requirements

Commitment - Nepacs asks volunteers

- To commit to the project and its purpose and give notice of absence as soon as


-To undertake an induction programme

-To agree to a DBS check (this will require a form of photo ID)


Please complete the form below to register your interest in the opportunity.