Meet the Team - David Mcilveen
My name is David Mcilveen and I am a Senior Probation Officer seconded to the Violence Reduction Partnership (VRP), and in this inaugural Update, it’s a privilege to share some insights into my work.
By working together with partner agencies, the Probation Service has been effective in tackling offending behaviour and helping transform people’s lives for the better, but with the inception of the VRP this approach has been further developed.
I work alongside colleagues from various disciplines to commission interventions and projects that address the criminogenic and socio-economic factors that help reduce the likelihood of violent offending.
There is a particular focus placed on providing appropriate advice, guidance and support to the families, children, and partners of those who have loved ones serving custodial sentences, or who may be subject to licence. Research tells us that an individual is much more likely to engage with their prison sentence and subsequent resettlement if they know their family, or loved one, receives support too. Now, for the first time, the charity ‘Partners of Prisoners’ has two family workers working across the five Merseyside boroughs providing support to do this, as a result of our partnership.
Improved mentoring and accommodation services provides service users with access to even more support as they leave custody and re-settle into the community.
The VRP has also funded an 8-session interactive group work programme called ‘Lifeboat’, which will be rolled out in several Approved Probation Premises in Merseyside. This aims to develop problem solving and communication skills, while helping participants to explore attitudes and values with the aim of reducing conflict in communities. (See the full story here.)
It is my hope that, by working in close partnership and implementing these interventions, we will start to see a reduction in violent offending and to provide opportunities for individuals to make real and long-lasting positive changes in their lives.