meet harrison, an inside change participant
Inside Change is our creative project that upskills prisoners about personal finances through radio drama.
In December 2022, a group of prisoners worked with our professional drama and recording artists James Baldwin and Tony Russell to write, perform and record a radio play themed around finance. This enabled them to develop their understanding of topics such as budgeting, debit cards, APR and money choices, helping them transition back into the community on release with new skills and improved self-esteem.
We spoke to Harrison about his experiences on the project.
“My name is Harrison, I’m 32 and I’m an inmate. I’ve got a 15-year sentence, with five-and-a-half years left, so I’ll be released in June 2028.
“This week we’ve been doing a money management course called Inside Change in which we made a radio play. I played a character called Dean and I really enjoyed it.
“It was good to work in a group and as a team. I’ve never done anything like this before, but a few of the lads on the wing had done [the project] the week before and told us it was a decent course, so I jumped on it.
“At first I wondered, ‘what have I signed up to?’ It involved a lot of speaking in front of an audience, but as I got into the project I really enjoyed it and I’m glad I did it. I’ve learnt a few things about banking, and I’ve also had experience in public speaking. I think that’s important because in the future, it will help with speaking in front of people in a meeting, so it’s really helped.
“I’VE COME AWAY WITH KNOWLEDGE THAT WILL HELP ME IN THE FUTURE”
“I really enjoyed working with the artists, James and Tony. They guided us and worked really well with us. It was good working in a group with the other lads too, we had a good laugh.
“This project has definitely been one of the more productive things I’ve done since I’ve been in jail. Some of the courses you go on are pointless, but I feel like I’ve come away from this with actual knowledge that will help me in the future. The business pitching exercise was good practice for anything I want to do in the future.
“The project has taught me that I should believe in myself and put myself out there more.”
This project was funded by Santander UK Foundation Limited.