Our 2016/17 programme was funded by Department for Justice through the Northern Ireland Prison Service, and additional workshops were supported by the Arts Council for Northern Ireland.
During the year our PAF Artists in Residence
engaged with 5792 prisoners, 3124 prisoners in Maghaberry prison, 1599 prisoners in Magilligan prison and 1069 students in Hydebank Wood College
delivered 895 workshops across all three prisons; 482 workshops in Maghaberry prison, 231 workshops in Magilligan prison and 182 workshops in Hydebank Wood College
facilitated 2416.5 hours of programme across all three prisons; 1248.5 hours in Maghaberry prison, 620.5 hours in Magilligan prison and 547.5 hours in Hydebank Wood College.
We have seen the positive impact of creative interventions for offenders; music, visual arts, woodcraft and creative writing can support an offender’s journey to a crime-free life. We have collected a significant amount of narrative-based evidence to capture the subtle yet transformative power of the arts. Like many arts services we achieve results with offenders that are considered “soft”, such as improved self-awareness, communications skills and developing a positive sense of self. Participation in arts activities enables individuals to begin to redefine themselves. Arts projects facilitate high levels of engagement and they can have a positive impact on how people manage themselves during their sentence, particularly on their ability to cooperate with others. Engagement with arts projects facilitates increased compliance with and their impact on participant’s criminal justice orders and regimes.
The status of PAF’s arts practitioners as professional artists is highly significant in the success of projects. Finally each of our 8 creative residencies provided safe spaces for individuals to have positive experiences and begin to make individual choices.