Learning to read isn't just a brilliant thing, it changes lives. It builds confidence, helps keep people connected and makes the world an easier place to live. It makes the impossible, possible. Listen and read about how Shannon Trust is helping people in prison.

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More than Words - 2019 Impact Report

How the commitment of people in prison, prison staff and Shannon Trust volunteers is changing lives.

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Michael's Story: Part 1

'I could look at it a thousand times and it was like looking at a blank piece of paper'. Michael was 8 years into his sentence when he started to learn to read with his Mentor. Our first audio picks up with him shortly after he started learning.

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Michael's Story: Part 2

'I could never have imagined myself doing that.'

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Michael's Story - Part 3

'It's coming along great actually.'

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Michael's story - Part 4

'I can do this, and I'm somebody.'

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Listening to our expert citizens

Listening to Learners and Mentors helps make sure we keep their experience at the heart of Shannon Trust. Our annual survey is just one of the ways we listen. Catch up with what we found out in the latest survey.

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Why Shannon Trust volunteers make a difference

A prison governor explains why volunteers, supporting prisoners, works.

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'What did it feel like before you could read?'

Ben Okri and Learners at HMP Isis.

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Prisoners helping Prisoners

Listen as Radio 4 Today guest editor Ben Okri visits HMP Isis to talk to Mentors and Learners involved in the Shannon Trust.

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Birmingham City University Evaluation

File download in PDF format

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'I have a little daughter so it helps me as well.'

How being involved with Shannon Trust is helping people in prison and their families.

'Making a genuine difference.'
'I bet no-one in here could visualise what it's like not to know how to read and write'
'All the lives changed because of that..'
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Highway to hell

Debbie's life started to change when she become a Shannon Trust Mentor. Now released and into her 4th year sober, Debbie's mended relationships with her family and life is very different. Debbie popped along to the BBC to explain how being a Mentor made this possible.

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We met with Adam and the team at HMP Holme House to celebrate him completing Turning Pages. Relying on people to help him in prison was frustrating for Adam, but his life is changing now he can read. Read more from Adam, his Mentor and some of the staff.

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Unselfish connections

David's life began to change once he became a Shannon Trust Mentor. Listen to his poem summing up what takes place between and Mentor and their Learner.