Michael Thompson will never forget the day he met Jackie Hewitt-Main OBE, founder of The Cascade Foundation, during the very first week of his 14-month custodial sentence at HMP Doncaster.
The History graduate from Greater Manchester stood out from many of his fellow prisoners with his University education and calm, friendly demeanour. Within five minutes of chatting to Michael about her innovative prison project to teach inmates to read and write, she’d realised his potential and recruited him to start mentoring prisoners under her guidance.
“Working with Jackie to teach individuals to read and write gave me a unique insight into why people end up in prison,” explains Michael. “I started to understand that a person’s background could dramatically affect their chances and realised very quickly that if someone doesn’t have any tangible level of literacy or numeracy, the more likely they are to offend.”
RiteTrax is a social enterprise established in 2015 to provide a platform for underground creative culture in Sheffield. We run multi format creative events to showcase the full spectrum of underground creativity, with a focus on freedom of expression, collaboration and community. We showcase everything from live music and DJs to visual projections, spoken word poetry, live art and more.