What we do

We concentrate solely on what we set out to do in 1998 when our charity first started - mentoring young offenders. We have a unique product and we aim to offer this to as many young offenders as we can reach. We are a mentoring charity that works exclusively with young offenders and are currently based at HMYOI Aylesbury (our Registered Office), HMP/YOI Brinsford (Wolverhampton) HMP/YOI Isis (London) and HMP Wandsworth (London). Trailblazers recruit, train and match suitable volunteer mentors with young offenders who have asked to be mentored. Before being matched, each young offender will have been interviewed and risk assessed.

Through our committed and dedicated team of over 125 volunteer mentors, Trailblazers works in close partnership with YOIs, prison staff and other stakeholders to prevent re-offending. Volunteer mentors are fully supported by their Project Manager and are thoroughly trained to ensure structure in the mentoring relationship.

The Tool Sets we use are unique, they were designed in-house, piloted with mentors and with the young men that we work with. They are achieving hugely positive outcomes in terms of our aims: increased self-awareness, changes in thinking, attitude and behaviour. The mentor meets the young offender approximately six months before his release date and during weekly visits, endeavours to build up a relationship of trust which will ultimately lead to increased self-awareness, self-esteem and confidence in the young offender and thus will reduce the risk of re-offending. Mentor and mentee meet weekly inside the prison.

Upon release the mentor endeavours to keep in regular weekly contact with the young person, to lend a listening ear and a helping hand; to assist with finding accommodation, study/training opportunities, jobs, etc. and to be a source of support, guidance, advice and encouragement for a period of up to 12 months.
The mentoring relationship will come to a natural end when the young offender has secured employment or is back in education.
Lord Ramsbotham
Lord Ramsbotham
Our Patron
David Ramsbotham, Baron Ramsbotham GCB, CBE is a retired British Army officer, who later served as Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Prisons from 1995 to 2001. He was awarded his life peerage in 2005 and now sits on the cross benches of the House of Lords. He is President of the Koestler Awards scheme and Vice-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Penal Affairs; he is President of UNLOCK and an Ambassador for the charity, The Prison Advice and Care Trust; he is a trustee and President of the Institute of Food, Brain and Behaviour; he is a Patron of Prisoners Abroad, a charity that supports the welfare of Britons imprisoned overseas and their families, and Prisoners Education Trust, a charity that supports serving prisoners through a range of academic, creative and vocational distance learning courses whilst inside; he is a Patron of the African Prisons Project, an international non-governmental organisation; he is President of the charity PTSD Resolution, which provides treatment to Veterans with post-traumatic stress through its UK-wide network of 200 therapists; he is Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Speech, Language and Communication Difficulties and of the Criminal Justice and Acquired Brain Injury Interest Group and also Chairman of the Cross Party Group on Drugs, Alcohol and Criminal Justice