How We Work

The British prison population is over 88,000. On release, prisoners receive £82.39 and lacking money, education, a job, a stable family or a home, over 70% re-offend. Their life is spent in and out of prison.

The Sheriffs’ & Recorder’s Fund helps to break this vicious cycle. At the critical time when a prisoner is released, the Fund gives small grants to supply a vital need. It also gives larger grants to prison-based charitable schemes which work towards the rehabilitation of prison leavers. 

For an evaluation of the effectiveness of the Fund’s activities, please click on this link to Independent Evaluation.

The Fund has two part-time administrative staff based at the Old Bailey in an office kindly provided by the Corporation of London. The Chair, Trustees and members of the Advisory Council are all voluntary.

The Probation Service and other Social Welfare agencies recommend people for grants, mainly in the first weeks after release, when prison leavers are at most risk of re-offending. The Fund immediately evaluates applications to ensure that they meet the Fund’s eligibility criteria. Grant money is then handled not by the prison leaver but by the recommending Service.

For further information on the application process please see the Guidelines and FAQs.

The Fund reacts speedily to requests: “I recently sent you a funding request and asked for it to be returned as soon as possible. This particular application was returned within 3 working days of me sending it and I am so grateful that you were not only able to fund the request, but also to return it so quickly.”