A new Glasgow app connecting people to support for issues which can contribute to offending and reoffending has been launched.
Community Justice Glasgow commissioned the online tool, which was developed in partnership with Glasgow Girls Club, in a bid to reduce reoffending by helping people access more than 800 services.
The Let's Get Connected app links to a wide range of community based groups and local services offering support and advice for those experiencing trauma, poverty, mental health problems, addiction, unemployment, homelessness, and Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES). The app lists hundreds of public services and Third Sector groups in a bid to help people access support quickly and easily.
Glasgow Girls Club who have supported women and girls with personal experience of the criminal justice system led development of the app which can be downloaded to a mobile phone or accessed on a computer. Glasgow Girls Club will train volunteers to verify and update the crowd-sourced information in their neighbourhoods. These community champions will use their local knowledge to keep the app up-to-date while learning valuable digital skills.
Councillor Jen Layden, Glasgow's Convener for Equalities and Human Rights, said: "Sadly many people who come into contact with the justice system have suffered trauma or have mental health or addiction problems. Evidence and experience shows that if they are connected to positive influences in their community and receive the support they need at an early stage, they are more likely to pursue positive paths.
"If we address the underlying issues which can lead to offending, we can reduce the risk of people coming into contact with the justice system as well as lowering the risk of repeat offending. This new free app offers easy access to a wealth of community based support."
The app is mainly for Community Justice professionals who signpost people to organisations for support, but it can also be accessed directly by the public. It was trialled and welcomed by professionals from social work, Police Scotland and the Scottish Prison Service.
Amy Rew of Glasgow Girls Club said: "We have always been driven to create pathways for connections for women and girls at risk of crisis. Some of our project participants have had first-hand experience of the justice system and we have seen the impact that being linked into their communities has made on diversion from further offending. Our partnership with Community Justice Glasgow has allowed us to harness the power of technology and share this knowledge for a wider community benefit, across the spectrum of gender, age and background."
The app can be accessed at https://app.letsget.scot