Vision Housing, a London based charity and social enterprise that supports prisoners into housing, has been acquired by the Forward Trust, a social business with charitable status that supports people to break the cycles of crime and addiction. Forward Trust had previously been known as RAPt.
Vision Housing’s service offer is a complimentary addition to Forward’s existing substance misuse and employment services for ex-offenders and people in recovery from addiction. The staff from Vision will continue working from their office in Croydon until December, and will thereafter be based at Forward’s Head Office in Vauxhall.
Mike Trace, Chief Executive of the Forward Trust, said: ‘Vision Housing has established an innovative way of making private rented accommodation available to prisoners on the day of release. We know that safe accommodation is a key factor in helping to tackle re-offending and reducing the chance of someone in recovery relapsing. We are looking forward to developing that model to meet the needs of more of our beneficiaries in the coming months.’
Gill Chapman, Chair of Vision Housing, said: “When our inspirational founder and CEO decided to leave Vision Housing to concentrate on new opportunities, we decided our work could best be taken forward in partnership with a larger charitable organisation in the offender rehabilitation sector. We commissioned Eastside Primetimers to find that organisation for us. Out of a field of potential partners, this led to fruitful meetings with four charities.
We ultimately chose the Forward Trust because their existing projects and effective hands-on approach were a good fit with our own. Their drug and alcohol support work as RAPt has been impressive and our new merger, in addition to their previous merger with Blue Sky Development and Regeneration, means that together we will have an integrated rehabilitation package to offer clients.
Eastside Primetimers then carried out due diligence to ensure that the new partnership would be beneficial to both organisations and our beneficiaries. We are delighted that the results were positive and our merger is now underway. Our well-respected name will be retained within the merged Forward Trust structure and we believe the new organisation will produce better results than any of us could have achieved on our own”.