“I wouldn’t have a job in the Criminal Justice Sector without volunteering!”

Olivia, Criminology & Psychology graduate, is now a Case Worker at Remedi, where she initially volunteered as a student. For more information about Remedi, and their work in restorative justice, visit  www.remediuk.org/

Hi Olivia, how did you get involved with Remedi?

I had a meeting with Sheryl, my Employability Adviser, and after talking about my interests she suggested that I contact Remedi to enquire about volunteering. The Derbyshire team offered me three sessions a week working on the Victim Support Programme.  I was responsible for making telephone contact with victims of all different types of crime and offering them help and support.

After about 5 or 6 months Remedi offered me some paid work on a temporary basis and then in June 2017 I was offered a permanent job on the Restorative Justice project!

Tell me a little bit about your current role

There are two strands to my job; one with young offenders and the other with adults. In my work with young offenders, I deal with people who have been referred from the Youth Justice Panels.  We have one-to-one sessions based around their conviction and we might do things like sending a letter of apology to the victim.  I also get to sit on Youth Justice Panels, which means I get to be part of the decision making process about what happens to an offender.

On the adult side my referrals come from Witness Care; if a victim shows an interest in restorative justice they are passed onto me and I make contact with both parties. Initially, I meet with the victim and the offender separately and then we decide what happens from there.

How did your degree prepare you for this role?

When I first started there was a lot of training based around theories of psychology and I was already familiar with most of it. Also, my degree gave me prior knowledge of community sentencing and the terminology used in Youth Justice Panels

What is the best part of your job?

I really like working with young people, and if I’d not volunteered I don’t think I would have considered it as a career option

What do you see yourself doing next?

More work with young people, maybe Case Management with young offenders

What advice would you give to new students starting at Hallam this semester?

Start volunteering in your first year! I left it until my final year and it was really difficult to fit around my academic study.

Thanks Olivia!