The Liason and Diversion service run by our Children and Adult Mental Health Services has bagged the the runner up award at the Howard League for Penal Reform Community Awards. The Howard League for Penal Reform is a national charity working for less crime, safer communities and fewer people in prison.

The Liason and Diversion service supports young people who have been arrested or charged, and who need extra support.

The award recognises the most successful community projects across the country that have encouraged activity away from crime.

The service works in partnership with the Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust and  the charity Response, which provides mental health services across the Thames Valley..

The Thames Valley Liaison and Diversion service has teams in Berkshire, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire, and it aims to identify vulnerabilities in people going through the criminal justice system, and to do so early on. It also assesses people and provides referral and support to help them towards the right treatment, helping to improve their health and reduce social care needs and offending rates.

The service began in 1991, and it has already been recognised as a ‘pathfinder’ service for the development of a nationwide liaison and diversion model.

Perhaps most importantly, the service continues to receive excellent feedback from the people who use it.