EU Projects: Promoting Integrated Professional Development for Prison Practitioners in Vocational Excellence for Offender Reintegration

On 14 and 15th of May 2024, SkillLab’s co-founder Christoph Bretgeld and EU project manager, Sylvana Hiltrop, were invited to join 17 other partner organizations for a new project kick-off meeting at the University of Valladolid, Spain. The new project, PROMOTE, stands for Promoting Integrated Professional Development for Prison Practitioners in Vocational Excellence for Offender Reintegration. As revealed by its name, the project focuses on the upskilling and reskilling of prison practitioners to support offenders’ reintegration into society.

The inspiration for the project comes from the partner organizations’ past work with correctional institutions and the prison ecosystem. They realized that despite the immense importance of these professionals for society, there is not enough support and structure in terms of learning and upskilling opportunities. As professionals who work in the prison system come from very different educational backgrounds and fields, building a unified learning environment poses a big challenge.

Under the coordination of the Prison of Timișoara as well as CPIP Romania, SkillLab and 17 other partner organizations are taking on the mission of filling this gap and reshaping the professional development in Europe’s correctional systems. Some points are already on our to-do list in achieving this goal, such as:

  • Developing a comprehensive curriculum and certification process tailored to equip practitioners with essential skills for offender reintegration.
  • Creating Centers of Vocational Excellence (CoVE) to democratize access to learning and enable practitioners to enhance skills crucial for effective rehabilitation outcomes.
  • Mapping a comprehensive European ecosystem of correctional skills for prison and non-prison staff working in offender support and community integration, including updated ESCO occupational profiles.

The PROMOTE consortium comprises 18 organizations from Romania, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Hungary, Lithuania, Portugal, Germany, Denmark, and Turkey. The project will run until March 2028 and is co-funded by the European Union under the Erasmus+ Centers of Vocational Excellence (CoVe) program.

You are invited to follow our progress on PROMOTE’s LinkedIn and Facebook.

Partner organizations:

  • Prison Timisoara - PENITENCIARUL TIMISOARA, Romania (Coordinator)
  • CPIP - Center for Lifelong Learning, Romania
  • BETI - Baltic Education Technology Institute, Lithuania
  • KALDEP - Lithuanian Prison Service, Lithuania
  • KTU - Kauno Technologijos Universitetas, Lithuania
  • Bremen Senate of Justice and Constitution, Germany
  • INCH - Interchange Non-Profit gUG, Germany
  • IPS - Innovative Prison System (QUALIFY JUST - IT Solutions and Consulting LDA), Portugal
  • Aproximar - Cooperativa de solidariedade social, Portugal
  • Egas Moniz School of Health & Science, Portugal
  • CEIPES - International Center for the Promotion of Education and Development, Italy
  • Centro Studi - Opera Don Calabria, Italy
  • Universidad de Valladolid, Spain
  • EGE University, Turkey
  • SkillLab, Netherlands
  • Progress Consult Danish–Hungarian Development Consultancy Company, Hungary
  • Brainlog, Denmark
  • Fængselsforbundet - Danish Prison Federation, Denmark