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About The Golden Thread

This project will develop a comprehensive methodology for the systematic consolidation of prisoners’ familial connections and the support of family members to provide care to each other. 

This methodology is expected to lay the essential groundwork to equip prisons and the communities with all the necessary methodologies and tools that will assist them to capitalize on the enormous power of family bonding on the prisoner re-integration cause.

Why is it so important?


With nearly half million people behind bars in the European Union, prisoner rehabilitation has grown to become one of the most prominent features of European penal policy. International law stipulates that imprisonment should not be limited to the deprivation of liberty alone. It should include opportunities for prisoners to obtain knowledge and skills that can assist them in their successful reintegration upon release, with a view to avoiding future offending

The role of the family in reducing recidivism and supporting reintegration is now for the first time considered as “part of the solution”. Family and other relationships need to be a golden thread running through the criminal justice system”.

  • Strong families have a natural power to provide the much-needed ongoing direction and personal support a reformed ex-prisoner needs to start anew.
  • Strong families are a moral compass that re-direct (ex)offenders away from crime.
  • Strong families offer shelter and financial assistance, in the days that follow the release.

Strong familial ties benefit not only prisoners, but society as a whole. Given that the majority of prisoners’ families are profoundly motivated to help their prisoners serving sentences build a better life for themselves, free from offending patterns of behavior, they constitute a potential army of support for the prison system that has not yet been strategically and consistently deployed.