[Names have been changed to preserve anonymity]

Lucy was referred to Shine while in custody at HMP Edinburgh. The key aspects of Lucy’s mentoring plan were: transport, resolving her housing and benefits issues, ensuring benefits were put in place, dealing with confidence, relationship building with her family, and building a positive future for Lucy. In addition, Lucy needed to know where she stood with Phoenix futures, to gain support around her cravings.

After Lucy’s mentor spoke with Phoenix, it turned out that she has missed five separate appointments, and had to be re-referred. The Shine mentor then spent time with Lucy explaining how important it was for her to attend this appointment and she would need to give up work on the day and time her appointment for Phoenix was allocated, if they were at the same time.

The mentor then spoke with Lucy’s housing officer and worked out the best course of action surrounding Lucy’s housing situation while in prison. Together they agreed that Lucy could keep on the tenancy and accrue housing arrears, which could then be resolved on liberation through applying for housing and council tax benefit and appeals the arrears due to being in custody. The mentor continued to be in contact with the benefits department and the housing officer throughout her time in prison, whilst reassuring Lucy that her tenancy was secure.

The mentor sourced the appropriate forms to complete for a community care grant (CCG) as Lucy was desperate for clothing as a result of weight gain in prison, and Lucy was granted a CCG of £140 to buy new clothes when she was liberated.

Lucy was very keen to meet with her mentor every week and work on building on her self- confidence and looking towards building a life in the community drug free. She also completed her SQA level 4 in personal effectiveness, while in prison and her mentor looked for classes in self- help and confidence classes within her community.

Lucy has a daughter, who is 20 and works full time and they have a good relationship.  Lucy wanted to improve her relationships with her parents and was very keen for the mentor to speak to her mother and inform her of all the positive work Lucy was doing while in custody. The mentor called her mother and passed on the positive work Lucy was participating in whilst in prison.

Lucy was granted HDC and was liberated from prison. The mentor followed the action plan created by Lucy and her mentor for what would happen on the date of liberation, starting from their meeting at the visitors centre to the tag being fitted. Throughout the day, Lucy and her mentor went to the council office to collect her CCG vouchers, attended Lucy’s GP appointment, collected her prescription from the pharmacist, bought new clothes, sorted out gas for Lucy’s home, and then returned to her tenancy for her tag to be fitted.

Lucy and her mentor still have regular meetings, and their next meeting will be an application form for a beauty course which will be done at the office.

One reason why Lucy’s case turned out so well was because there was a clear action plan in place from the beginning, and each meeting had a focus and a goal. The mentor/mentee relationship was clear from the start, and Lucy had a clear focus in her head that she wanted support, was willing to work for it and wanted a life free of crime. Also, having a regular and consistent mentor meant that she was in a position to achieve what she said she would achieve for Lucy, with fantastic results.