A - DESCRIPTION OF THE GOOD PRACTICE
The Working Partnership Resohelp of Diakonisches Werk, Local Committee Hannover - registered society
A well-established contact point for ex-prisoners and in Hannover, Resohelp has been working for more than 40 years on counselling and supporting delinquents, sentenced prisoners, ex-prisoners and their families to gain social rehabilitation and reintegration. Resohelp offers extensive information and support on managing the various issues encountered by the target group, which range from the prevention of detention, flat-hunting, and allowance of claims all the way through debt counselling and other individual problems.
Hannover, Lower Saxony, Germany
Field of activity
Q Human health and social work activities
- To address legal or financial exclusion
- To enable adaptation to new realities
- To improve social cohesion/inclusion
End date (if applicable)
Resohelp offers exhaustive advice/counselling for prisoners/offenders and their families.
Health and social care
Helping (ex-)prisoners reintegrate within the community and develop social skills, such as self-responsibility, self-care, and social responsibility
Advice/counselling, acting as agency for clients and the Public Prosecution Service (e.g. on adjustment of fines), supporting the clients on flat-hunting/cancellation and other legal and administrative formalities
In 2012 and 2013, Resohelp has been giving support to about 500 cases/year.
B - IMPACT ON SOCIETY AND ECONOMY
(Ex-)prisoners are extensively informed on their legal situation as well as financial claims, and empowered to submit their claims, apply for jobs, thus step-by-step (re-) assuming full responsibility for their legal and financial situation.
Creation/conservation of local employment
By giving job service counselling and support for delinquents and ex-prisoners on the one hand, and by hiring their own staff, Resohelp makes a small but significant contribution towards creation/conservation of local employment. At Resohelp, there are currently 3.33 positions for social workers and one position of a professional practical trainee.
Adaptation to new realities
Resohelp's work helps society understand the issues behind the (ex-)prisoners' legal and financial situations, at the same time supporting the latter while adjusting to today's fast-moving realities.
Cross sectoral working
Resohelp acts as an interface between the clients and different institutions or persons (e.g. the Public Prosecution Service, the Job Center / Employment Agency, landlords, and many other charities), thus increasing their area of impact. This cross-sectoral work is being ensured by the fact that Resohelp has been founded as a Working Partnership (Arbeitsgemeinschaft) of 8 institutions: the Diakonisches Werk – Local Committee Hannover e. V., the Caritas Association of Hannover e. V., the City of Hannover, Department of Social Affairs, the Prisoner Welfare Association of Hannover, the Head of the Correctional Facility of the City of Hannover, the Catholic Church Office of the Correctional Facility of the City of Hannover, the Association of City Churches of Hannover, and the Job Center of Hannover Region.
Enablement of social enterpreneurship
Impacts not known
Amenities for local people
Helping delinquents and former prisoners reintegrate within their social communities, Resohelp brings benefits not only to the target group, who gradually achieve social rehabilitation, but also to the communities themselves.
Resohelp's work makes a good contribution to help (ex-)prisoners and offenders develop their social skills, including self-esteem, self-responsability and self-care, but also taking on social responsibility.
In times of crisis, supporting vulnerable social groups becomes essential. By their decades of experience as well as by their long-standing partners, the Working Partnership Resohelp holds all the instruments necessary for supporting the target group from being excluded from community life and from society.
Local financial environment for soc ent
Local policy environment for soc ent
National financial environment for soc ent
Impacts not known
National policy environment for soc ent
Impacts not known
C - PARTNERSHIPS & GOVERNANCE
More than half of Resohelp's funding is provided by the Federal State of Lower Saxony. It is this fact, along with the good, long-standing working partnership mentioned above, which ensures the continual dialog between the state government and the beneficiaries of Resohelp.
Influence on local / national decision makers
Partnership work involved
Resohelp has been established as a Working Partnership (AG) consisting of following partners: the Diakonisches Werk – Local Committee Hannover e. V., the Caritas Association of Hannover e. V., the City of Hannover, Department of Social Affairs, the Prisoner Welfare Association of Hannover, the Head of the Correctional Facility of the City of Hannover, the Catholic Church Office of the Correctional Facility of the City of Hannover, the Association of City Churches of Hannover, and the Job Center of Hannover Region.
It is these members along with the Federal State of Lower Saxony (Ministry of Justice) and the Hannover Region who provide the necessary funding to run the Working Partnership Resohelp.
D - PR & TRANSFERABILITY
Would this programme work well in another European context?
The programm might be well suited to be transferred to another European context.
Communication of experience and success to the public
There is regular reporting done at the general meetings of all members. Yearly reports as well as other information and communication material are published on the website of the managing partner, the Diakonisches Werk – Local Committee Hannover e. V.: http://www.diakonisches-werk-hannover.de/resohelp_hilfe_fuer_haftentlassene.html.
Communication with local/national decision makers
Communication with local decision makers takes place at both formal and informal level, e.g. at the general meetings, or within other partner networks.
Elements that would transfer particularly well to other contexts
Creating a working partnership to ensure the long-term success proves a particularly good idea to be tested for transfer to other contexts.
E - RESOURCES AND SUSTAINABILITY
Total income 2013
How is this made up?
The Federal State of Lower Saxony: 51%, the Job Center of Hannover Region: 19%, the Hannover Region: 15%, the Protestant Church: 12%, the City of Hannover: 1%, the Caritas Association of Hannover e. V.: 1%, the Catholic Church Office of the Correctional Facility of the City of Hannover: 1%.
3.3 positions of social workers, 1 position of practical trainee
If public funding were withdrawn, could the GP continue to exist?
Strengths, weaknesses, difficulties and lessons learned.
Strengths: Long-standing experience as a Working Partnership. Difficulties: Creating the necessary acceptance for the target group within the involved communities.
F - EXECUTIVE BODY AND CONTACT INFORMATION
Who set up the GP?
Charities representatives in cooperation with the Ministry of Justice of the Federal State of Lower Saxony and the City of Hannover in 1969.
Who runs the GP?
The Diakonisches Werk – Local Committee Hannover e. V.
The Working Partnership Resohelp offers exhaustive advice/counselling for prisoners/offenders and their families. The Diakonisches Werk – Local Committee Hannover e. V. has set the foundation for, and plays therefore the leading part, in the Working Partnership Resohelp. They are what is called a registered society according to German law. A registered society works not-for-profit and is therefore tax-privileged. It may, but not necessarily must have employers; the work can be done by volunteers.
Mr Peter Thomsen
0049 511 99040 23
G - SUPPORTING INFORMATION