Safe Ground - Using drama to educate prisoners and young people at risk in the community



Safe Ground offers a wide range of high quality training to professionals working within the prison and criminal justice system. Our methods can be effectively applied by managers, teachers, prison officers, Probation staff, family support workers, substance misuse workers, prison visitor centre staff, and voluntary sector agencies. Because we believe in the value of professionals challenging themselves to understand the experience of their service users, all the training we offer is immersive, active… and fun!

Fathers Inside & Family Man

Both Fathers Inside and Family Man were developed by Safe Ground in collaboration with male prisoners, under commission from the Home Office. Since 2003 over 5000 men have graduated from the programmes across 50 prisons in England & Wales. Both programmes use drama, role-play, fiction, warm-up games, group discussions and written portfolio work to intensively engage groups of 15-20 students at a time, with the courses running over 5-7 weeks.

The programmes are delivered with a minimum of two tutors in the classroom, supported by a family support worker outside of the classroom. Safe Ground is funded to train all the staff who deliver the programmes and to provide all the student and tutor resources. The two programmes culminate with a Family Visit Day and operate on a shared belief in strengthening family ties as a major step towards successful rehabilitation and reducing the risk of reoffending. But Fathers Inside and Family Man also diverge in offering two distinct learning opportunities for men in prison:

Fathers Inside is a ground-breaking parenting course which aims to equip prisoners with the skills and understanding to support their children’s education and upbringing, and to apply this learning whilst in custody. To deliver the programme staff must attend a four day residential training course,  this course will give staff the tools to set up and deliver the programme.

Family Man uniquely asks prisoners to work with a Supporter to enable them to create a family action plan, aiming to equip them with the skills and understanding to strengthen key relationships whilst in custody. To deliver the programme staff must attend a four day residential training course, this course will give staff the tools to set up and deliver the programme.

CPD training

Safe Ground’s Continual Professional Development (CPD) training courses are offered to staff from across our network of Fathers Inside and Family Man prison delivery sites, as well as to partners in local authorities and the voluntary sector. Each CPD training course has been carefully designed to productively explore a different topic or theme.

Safe Ground can also tailor CPD training events to meet corporate requirements (at a cost). For more information about upcoming CPD training courses, or to enquire about a bespoke CPD course, please email us at

Hidden Sentence training

Safe Ground offers this training package (as developed by Action for Prisoners Families) to any professionals who are likely to come into contact with prisoners’ families. The one day course builds on existing expertise to raise awareness of the impacts of imprisonment on families. The training is suitable for a wide range of staff, including schools, play workers, health visitors, prison visitor centres, probation, courts, police, youth workers and family intervention teams. Practitioners will gain the knowledge and understanding they need to develop services that can better meet the support needs of family members. The course requires 10-20 participants and the organisation commissioning the training would take on responsibility for promoting the event and providing the venue. Click here for more details on Hidden Sentence training, including costs.


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