A sweet future thanks to some positive changes

Positive Changes supports women who have touched the Scottish criminal justice system by helping them towards employment through the making and selling of chocolates.

It was set up by Joyce Murray, who was working as a volunteer at HMP Cornton Vale Family Hub centre, when she saw first-hand the significant barriers women with convictions face in gaining employment. Having a job plays a key part in reducing the likelihood of reoffending, and she believed she could make a positive change in her community by creating employment opportunities for these women.

She received £25,000 Build It Award from Firstport, Scotland’s development agency for start-up social entrepreneurs and social enterprises. Joyce said the award came at just the right time as the organisation had been incorporated for just over a year and its market presence was growing, with more and more women accessing its services.

Positive Changes is now flourishing and has big plans for the future. Joyce said: “I hope we can continue to grow, supporting more and more women and selling more and more chocolates. The criminal justice system for women in Scotland is changing. I would love for Positive Changes to be an integral part of the new offering for women in each of the new Community Custody Units and the National Facility in Scotland.”