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Coaching behind bars: facing challenges and creating hope in by Clare McGregor

By Clare McGregor

Such a lot people's belief of training is that it's a excessive price carrier for hugely paid executives or managers. yet what when you provided it to a couple of the main marginalized humans in our society- girls in criminal?

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COACHING BEHIND BARS Coaches can help clients turn pain into strength: ‘You bravely accepted the reality of your situation – even though it hurts – and used that hurt to fuel your determination to change. ’ We notice and build on clients’ internal motivation, as this is what they take away with them. Realization of the possibility of change means a client’s motivation has increased from three to five during her first session alone. More vitally, a client can move from wondering about the point of living: ‘Before I was thinking dead bad thoughts.

Fortunately, the prison has now given us the luxury of two small rooms of our own. People know where we are too, whereas we might have quietly sat down for a session in any empty room in the past. This opportunistic approach worked well for coaching but less well for security. Being just one number out on the head count of a ‘stand-fast roll check’ can be the difference between a smoothly running establishment and very unwelcome news headlines. Thinking someone might have escaped when she is actually thinking quietly in a room with her coach is not a good thing, so our new location was welcomed by everyone.

If a client does not want to continue we can simply note ‘coaching was not suitable at this point’.  When you go for that introductory session there’s no pressure. It’s: ‘This is what we could offer. This is what you could do for you, not what we could do for you. ’ I think that’s quite important to people. There can be a big difference between being willing and being ready. ’ We gauge this and often give clients the benefit of the doubt.  “you were a really angry person when you first came in”, because I didn’t know what it was, or who had put me in for it.

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