Spark Inside

Enabling young people leaving prison to thrive

Covid-19 resulted in young prisoners being kept in prolonged solitary confinement. This worsened issues (e.g. mental ill-health) and stripped away hope. Our programmes will enable young people to understand their strengths, build confidence, and renew optimism so they can build a bright future.

history Campaign has now closed

It ran from 12:00 PM, 30 November 2021 to 12:00 PM, 7 December 2021

Registered Charity in England and Wales (1148420)

Check mark Match funded

Campaign target


Amount raised




Championed by The Childhood Trust


  • Health/WellbeingHealth/Wellbeing
  • Human Rights/AdvocacyHuman Rights/Advocacy
  • OtherOther


  • Children (3-18)Children (3-18)
  • Minority GroupsMinority Groups
  • Young People (18-30)Young People (18-30)


United Kingdom


The Covid-19 crisis led to lockdown inside prisons and Young Offenders Institutions that amounted to prolonged solitary confinement, with no family visits, education and/or support services. Young people have lost so much: possibilities post-release, their mental health has suffered, and many have lost hope. Without support to realise their potential and build a positive future, there will be a long-term negative impact on individuals’ wellbeing, rehabilitation, and future life chances.


Our tried and tested coaching programmes will help restore young people’s confidence and hope, and build the skills and mindset needed to build a plan for a future that excites them, away from crime. The Covid-19 lockdown has meant we have not been able to deliver our programmes inside prison in 2020/21. However, we are now back in prisons and Young Offending Institutions and will work with as many young people as we can over the coming year, making up for lost time.

  • “Of course, looking back, no money in the world is worth it for someone else to tell you what to do, when to eat, when to sleep [in prison]. Before [the Hero’s Journey] I didn’t listen…Now I listen and play it out how things might go. I am now a lot more patient. My thinking pattern has changed".

    — Paul, aged 21, who took part in the Hero’s Journey

  • “To lead successful, crime-free lives when they leave custody, prisoners must change the way they feel about themselves and develop a belief that they can take control of their future.”

    — Charlie Taylor, HM Chief Inspector of Prisons, report ‘What happens to prisoners in a pandemic?'

  • “I was a pigeon and now I'm an eagle. As a pigeon, I wasn't brave, I was enclosed. As an eagle I fly high, I know what I want in life and I can see my future. I feel more free and open”.

    — Tomas, aged 19, who had telephone life coaching sessions in prison during lockdown

  • “I came up with ideas myself to know where I am and where I want to be. It wasn’t like a normal teaching method. My coach doesn’t tell you what you should do, he gives you little pushes to see what ideas you have, what skillset you have so basically what you want to do in your life.”

    — David, aged 23, who took part in the Hero’s Journey