People can volunteer with RJ West Yorkshire
Bradford has been nationally recognised over a number of years for delivering highly effective Restorative Justice to deal with crime and conflict.
Restorative Justice (RJ) is a voluntary process which uses volunteer facilitators from the local community to bring victims and offenders into communication; this may be direct or indirect.
Victims and people affected by crime or conflict take part in a restorative process for many different reasons. Often victims have questions and want to understand why the crime or conflict has happened. Others have concerns which can only be addresses by engaging with those responsible for the harm. A restorative process places victims at the heart of the process.
RJ can be used at all stages of the Criminal Justice System. It can be used for neighbourhood conflict, or as an Out of Court Disposal, as part of a Court Order and can also be delivered within the Prison.
Restorative Justice volunteer facilitators give up their own time to support people through the restorative process. Volunteer facilitators meet with all parties to find out what has happened, the impact and what outcomes both parties want. They will then look to facilitate either a direct face to face meeting or undertake indirect work to look at getting questions answered and try to resolve some of the issues for all parties. Cases can take anywhere between 6 to 20 hours.
Volunteers come from a range of backgrounds and are motivated to help individuals make changes to their lives. Individuals going through the process often feedback that the volunteers should be paid for what they do and what an amazing job they do. By being neutral and impartial, they are viewed differently to professionals and can facilitate better outcomes.
Given the number of volunteers, we are able to ensure that those with the right skills and experiences are allocated to each case. A large number of volunteers are willing to act as interpreters to ensure that the service is accessible to all.
Feedback from volunteers….
‘Making a different to people’s lives however small, gives me a sense of achievement’.
‘Real satisfaction comes from helping others. Keeping away personal gain and needs. The best of all is resolving conflict between the two individuals or groups. I feel very satisfied when I do voluntary work with the RJ Hub’.
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