Creating Future Opportunities

HM Prison and Probation Services (HMPPS) Creating Future Opportunities (CFO) know that people with strong foundations in place to make a success of their lives, are less likely to re-offend.  CFO projects are aimed at addressing barriers via appropriate support mechanisms tailored to individual needs and reducing re-offending. Established in 2002, we have secured over £530m of external funding via the European Social Fund for the Ministry of Justice. 
The current CFO3 and CFO Activity Hub programmes are part-funded by the European Social Fund and supported under the Youth Employment Initiative

Did you know? A recent Justice Data Lab report found that CFO services result in an 8% reduction in reoffending.


The current CFO3 project commenced delivery in July 2015 and will run through to March 2024. 

CFO3 is included as part of the Social Inclusion Thematic Objective for the 2014-2020 ESF Programme, which has a wider focus than employment. 

There are nine regional level contracts across England, with four mainstream services, operating across custody and community, with a particular emphasis on social inclusion.  

HMPPS CFO3 (previously known as Co-Financing Organisation) focuses on those offenders who have difficulty accessing mainstream employability or training services.

CFO Activity Hubs

HMPPS CFO Activity Hubs focuses on a safe space where offenders can engage in activities and access wrap around support, complementing existing provisions. 

There are 21 community-based CFO Activity Hubs across England, with one Veteran Hub at HMP/YOI Holme House. Five providers with emphasis on three broad category areas: 

  • Human/Citizenship
  • Community and Social
  • Interventions and Services

The current CFO Activity Hub project commenced in 2021 and will run to March 2024.

CFO Evolution

The CFO Evolution programme will commence delivery on 1 August 2024. For current CFO delivery please contact your CFO Activity Hub providers or CFO3 providers.

The CFO Evolution programme will build on the CFO3 and CFO Activity Hubs successes and the CFO’s work over the last two decades with hard-to-reach offenders. The CFO Evolution programme will be delivered in 90+ custody sites and over 25 community sites.

The overall focus of HMPPS Creating Future Opportunities is to help offenders move towards mainstream provision or activity which reinforces the value of leading law-abiding lives, such as entering employment, education, training and interacting positively with their family and local community. This is achieved through facilitating access to comprehensive support mechanisms appropriate to their individual circumstance and assessed need, and as such is a key delivery vehicle for MoJ Strategic Outcome 2: Reduce Reoffending. CFO Evolution is not a standalone programme. It is designed to complement and support core HMPPS provision, increasing value for money from other projects and better preparing those socially excluded to make a positive contribution to society.

Armed Forces Covenant

In 2016, HMPPS CFO was the recipient of an MoD Covenant Fund Trust (was Grant) fund. The project was called “Network for Ex-Service Personnel” (NESP). As a recap on the NESP project 2016-2018; the original proposal was to work with those Detainees Under Sentence (DUS) at the Military Corrective Training Centre, Colchester and also those in HMPPS CJS who have previously served for the Armed Forces and help support them through the gate with the ultimate goal of finding employment and reduce reoffending rates. 

A year ago I never thought I would have managed to do it. I thought I was never going yo be able to pull myself our of the rut I was in but with you I can now see a positive future.

Having frequent sessions with you has improved my motivation to go into employment. I am thankful that we are able to access training and have CM help with employment support. I feel lucky to have access to this.

Without your support I would not have the confidence to have been able to apply for a job. Before engaging with you my offence gave me severe anxiety and the thought of disclosing to a potential employer terrified me. With your help I have been able to disclose to two different employers and have been able to land myself a well-paid job with a reputable company.

CFO3 Participant

I couldn’t have done what I’ve done without all your help and support it really does mean a lot. It’s nice to have someone there to help encourage you along the way – it makes such a difference.

Everyone was treated equal, staff didn’t wear their name badges, so it was not obvious to identify who were staff or who were service users, and despite this, everyone respected each other and had fun. It built a good bridge between various partnering organisations.

I really didn’t know what to do or where to turn and you put me on track and have me focus, even being at my side through court proceedings and hearings, You are amazing and I really appreciate everything you have done for me.

I really wasn’t expecting to be able to get funding, so it means the world you have managed to sort that out for me so a huge thank you to you personally and your team.

The peer mentor scheme has changed my perspective on support; I’ve never had so much support and feel like I have more of a sense of purpose and responsibility.

It’s been a life changing experience since my release from prison. My main worry was trying to find something to do to fill my time, and avoid going back to old habits. The other main worry for me was that I would struggle with work since my release. But again, the hub put my worries to rest.

CFO Activity Hub Participant

I’ve built friendships through the project and more open as a person as well as learning ground working and joinery skills. Even having to be on time and having the structure helps too.

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