Funding cut stops Castle Gate charity's prisons work

Prison cell Castle Gate Family Trust has been based at HMP Gloucester for six years

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A charity based at HMP Gloucester has had to transfer its work to a national charity after child support worker posts were lost due to funding cuts.

Castle Gate Family Trust's casework has been moved to Family Focus, run by the Nelson Trust and InfoBuzz.

Diana Turner, from the trust, said: "I'm sure the work we're doing is going to continue and will be expanded as these organisations are bigger."

The partnership has confirmed it will continue and develop existing services.

'Power of families'

Some of the charity's services that have developed over the past six years have included offering play activities during prison visits and accompanying children on prison visits.

The charity has also begun the Storybook Dads scheme where imprisoned parents record a story and send it to their children.

But its child support worker posts have been cut as various grants ran out and could not be renewed.

Tony France, the partnership manager, said: "What we've been able to do is secure a future through to April in terms of its current position, so that's providing support during visit times for children, like crèche workers and we've also got a telephone line in so people can ring through.

"We've managed to secure a small amount of money to continue the community work as it is at the moment."

Mr France added the trust's work fitted well with Family Focus' existing services but there could be changes to how the service was delivered in the future.

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