Reducing Recidivism rates by Changing Mindset through the P2Eprogram

Client - Queensland Correctional Services

Organisational Need

Queensland Correctional Services required a case management and learning partner to roll out their Pathways2Employment initiative (previously known as Advance2Work) in the Northern Region. Addressing individuals' mindset, skills and environment assists in their successful transition from custody to community. The case management provides support to offenders/clients to maximise sustainable employment outcomes and/or the provision of higher learning opportunities through a holistic approach to service.

The success of this program is due to the one-on-one nature of the support assisting in:

Mindset Change

  • Mentality - Prisoners with a welfare-dependant mentality need to change and appreciate the reasons for gaining employment and becoming contributing members of society.

Skills Development

  • Career Change - White-collar criminals imprisoned due to accounting fraud cannot return to their previous careers as accountants. These people require new skills for a change in career.
  • Local economy - Prisoners returning to a high-unemployment local areas, need to have the skills and network to identify employment opportunities nearest to them.

Environmental Change

  • Criminal History - Not only is it difficult to find employment with a criminal record, the type of history will impact the type of employment. For instance, prisoners on parole for child-related offences have to remain a certain distance away from schools, and others may not be able to enter licensed premises, therefore cannot work in all types of kitchens.
  • Culture - Prisoners from a drug and alcohol culture, need to change their behaviour and their social environment.


  • The key components of this program include a training needs analysis, career pathway planning, personal development, job search skills and post placement support.
  • Once released, clients are referred to supporting agencies such as Indigenous support groups and networks, drug and alcohol support services, housing support agencies and other agencies and training organisations who have the ability to provide employment, educational and social support services. Services are accessed on an individual needs basis.

  • BSI Learning also works closely with Job Service Australia Providers, Disability Employment Service Providers, Centrelink and Queensland Probation and Parole offices to maximise clients' opportunities.
  • Post-placement support is a major element of the program as it serves to provide support and encouragement to clients in the early stages of employment. It also identifies any issues that may need to be addressed (cultural, transport, child care) as these could have an impact on the client's ability to maintain long-term employment.

Desired Outcomes

Reduce recidivism rates by guiding sentenced prisoners towards gaining and retaining employment.


Over a 30-month period, BSI Learning helped 25.7% of participants to gain employment and 17.9% retain employment for at least 13 weeks. 


  • "I found the program to be an excellent balance of modern academic thinking and practical knowledge and tools in the area of leadership. The eight days were well structured and delivered in a manner which enabled maximum understanding and reflection. Great delivery by Steve. I don’t think the program would have had the same potency without the energy and talent Steve obviously possesses as a trainer / motivator / coach."

    Benjamin Goodwin Boral
  • "I get up every time to make the most of opportunities for myself and those under my wings. What makes me most happy is when I read that I have touched someone’s inner self for the betterment of oneself. In particular prisoners who experience the limitations of their lives after leaving prison. If we can help them to turn around the ship and provide a little hope and some self-esteem, then, we have achieved the greater goal of our efforts that makes it all worthwhile and satisfactory for us and the work and effort we put into it.

    Most prisoners are grateful for what we offer and do; they make good students and come to class for the right reasons. This is what fascinates and drives me. I have had 2 fantastic weeks at BWCC and was able to successfully pass 8 new students as competent baristas, some of them were truly outstanding!"

    Mathew Verhoeven Hospitality Trainer, Brisbane Women's Correctional Centre

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