The Impact of Covid-19 on Food in Prison

By Amelia Hoy Covid-19 has had an unprecedented and detrimental impact on society as a whole, but prisons  have been even more susceptible to the impacts of the pandemic. As identified by the World Health Organisation (2020:1) people in prison are ‘more vulnerable to the coronavirus outbreak than the general population’ due to the closeContinue reading “The Impact of Covid-19 on Food in Prison”

International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day Claire Warrington, Doing Porridge Research Fellow As James Brown told us, this is a man’s world… prisons worldwide are a very clear demonstration of this, just 4% of the total number of people in prison are women. Since the government published the Corston Report in 2007, it has been acknowledged that women and menContinue reading “International Women’s Day”

Prison Visits:  A meaningful space to reunite ties between prisoners and their loved ones

Ellie Coburn and Sophie Pavitt Prison visits can be of great importance, including in supporting rehabilitation and incentivising people in prison to maintain good behaviour. Visits can also support healthy relationships with family networks, which may improve prisoners’ chances of rehabilitation. Factors such as having a safe place to live on release and emotional andContinue reading “Prison Visits:  A meaningful space to reunite ties between prisoners and their loved ones”

The Art of Qualitative Research: The Use of Artistic Methods in Prison

By Amelia Hoy What are artistic methods? In recent decades researchers have begun to explore how artistic methods can be used to conduct research (Leavy 2014). Artistic methods involve the researcher using art-making as their primary method during research (McNiff 2011) such as visual art (e.g. painting), literary forms (e.g. writing) and performative forms (e.g.Continue reading “The Art of Qualitative Research: The Use of Artistic Methods in Prison”

Observing Ramadan in Prison

Isabel Beaumont Approximately 1.6 billion people worldwide fast during Ramadan (IOPG, 2019). Muslims all over the globe will have spent the last month taking part in Ramadan. This is the 9th month of the Islamic calendar and it involves a focus on prayer, reading the Qur’an, community, self-reflection, and abstinence from impure thoughts. Muslims willContinue reading “Observing Ramadan in Prison”

A Taste of Christmas Behind Bars 

Isabel Beaumont and Amelia Hoy Food plays an important role in celebrating many holidays and cultural events. In prison, research has shown it can also provide an opportunity for socialising, strengthening of relationships and a way to express cultural and religious identities (Smoyer 2014; Godderis 2006). Although not everybody observes Christmas, the national focus onContinue reading “A Taste of Christmas Behind Bars “

Episode 2 of the ‘Doing Porridge’ Podcast

In this episode we talk to Helen Blasdale, catering manager at the Prison Advice and Care Trust about her role, the effects of the pandemic on food in prisons, the difference between catering in the male and female prison estates and how food can help to create memories in the visits hall. You can listenContinue reading “Episode 2 of the ‘Doing Porridge’ Podcast”

Our Time’ at HMP Send

By Isabel Beaumont, Amelia Hoy and Sophie Pavitt Being restricted to a cell, prisoners often experience a lack of creative freedom, preventing them from truly expressing their individuality. Some prisons have adopted an approach which encourages those incarcerated to participate in art workshops/courses. Many of these enable men/women in prison to express themselves through creativeContinue reading Our Time’ at HMP Send