Digital skills– a path to improve offender social (re)integration José Santos May 22, 2022

Digital skills– a path to improve offender social (re)integration

A European initiative takes the next steps to bring a new blended-learning platform to prisoners and ex-prisoners. The goal is to develop their digital skills and increase the opportunities for (re)integration.

As an essential requirement for using digital devices, communication applications, and networks to access and manage information, digital skills provide individuals with the ability to communicate, cooperate, create and share digital content.

The importance of digital skills when entering the job market

Nowadays, more than ever, the adoption of digital skills is critical, as societal changes are altering our lifestyles. These skills are increasingly required to fulfil our day-to-day needs, in tasks such as completing a payment using an ATM or a phone.

Within the business world, digital skills are in high demand. The tasks that require mastering such competencies have widened an already considerate skills gap.
Therefore, the lack of digital skills significantly impacts an individual’s life, namely its application to the job market.

While the digital skills needs are many and diverse across different areas of work,  developing basic competencies can facilitate the job hunt process. It can also improve the chances of job retainment, a crucial step in preventing recidivism.

Reducing the digital skills gap using a blended learning environment in prisons and probation

The Blended Learning Environment for European Prisoners (BLEEP) project promotes digital inclusion in its broadest sense. The initiative has created and implemented an innovative, Europe-focused blended learning platform for inmates and ex-convicts. The platform, which is accessible from both inside and outside the prison grounds, has been designed to answer the inmate’s most felt needs in skills development.
 
 The bleep APP and platform monitor the individual’s processes and progress.  Using gamification and digital learning as incentives, the goal is to turn the learning process into an interactive process.
 
The project consortium is preparing the implementation of the BLEEP platform in the partnership countries. In training events, they’re preparing staff to facilitate the use and maintenance of the platform. These meetings are also helpful in gathering feedback and considerations on the implementation of the BLEEP platform within the context of each partner country.
 

One of these short-term staff training events of the BLEEP project was held from the 17th to 19th of May, 2022, in Rotterdam (Netherlands).

During the Rotterdam event, the BLEEP project partners also gathered to discuss the progress and goals of the initiative. By bringing together the partnership and facilitators, the event was also useful for introducing new perspectives on the learning platform and its materials.

Know more about this project

BLEEP

Blended Learning Environment for European Prisoners

Both events have been organised by Exodus Foundation South Holland (Stichting Exodus Zuid-Holland), BLEEP project partner, and held at the Cube Houses in Rotterdam. All members of the consortium were present, including its promoter  CLICK F1 (Netherlands),  IPS_Innovative Prison Systems (Portugal), CHAINS (Netherlands), Direção Geral da Reinserção e dos Serviços Prisionais (Portugal), STEPS (Italy), Stichting Exodus Zuid-Holland (Netherlands), European Prison Education Association (Netherlands), and the Bucharest-Jilava Penitentiary (Romania).

For more information on the BLEEP project, please visit its webpage.

 

 

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