Restorative Engagement Forum

Winner of the Howard League Award for Restorative Approaches 2016

“Evidence shows that projects which help to keep people out of the criminal justice system, by providing alternative, proportionate, effective and targeted interventions, will reduce the risk of reoffending.  Only the very best schemes were honoured in the Community Awards 2016 and our winning projects are shining beacons of effective practice"

“I am delighted that Restorative Engagement Forums won the Restorative Approaches category and its work was recognised for its good practice and excellence. The judging panel highlighted in particular how the project involved users in the planning and decision making process in the use of forums, offering a programme tailored to their needs.  It also applauded the work for being rehabilitative and prevent future offending”

We facilitate transformative experiences.

Using a mixture of restorative approaches, theatre games and coaching exercises, REF provides original and effective workshops to build bridges where there is conflict. This innovative 3 stage process has been used in the following environments with great success: statutory organisations with local communities/young people senior management teams with staff corporations with local communities

... anywhere where there is existing conflict, communication issues, harm or damage

Our most recent work includes the Police/Youth Engagement Project, a highly effective 6 month body of work for Northamptonshire Police. A short film of this work is available on the POLICE/YOUTH ENGAGEMENT tab. Here at REF we are highly adaptable and have a broad skill base to meet your needs. REF offer training and coaching in restorative justice. REF have also delivered awareness raising sessions in restorative justice to many agencies and organisations. If you would like to find out more about how we can work with you please email us at:

Police/Youth Engagement

REF have delivered this project with Gloucestershire and Northamptonshire police forces.

The Northants Restorative Youth Engagement Project as shown in the film was a 6-month piece of work initiated by the PCC for Northamptonshire. The Project was to deliver 8 restorative approaches sessions alongside workshops to develop engagement skills (using theatre games and coaching work). The workshops brought together 60 police officers and 60 young people.

Charlotte Calkin and Paul Mukasa were sub-contracted by Restorative Solutions, who won the contract, to deliver the work. Many counties are now interested in following Northants and Gloucestershire’s lead. Charlotte and Paul are now working in their fifth county, Essex.

Young people between the ages of 14-18 with a history of involvement with the police are encouraged to get involved and share their stories. Many of the stories we hear are highly complex and sensitive. Often it is the families of the young people who are visited by the police and these young people have an opportunity to share their experience. The police also have the opportunity to discuss their practices.

Each session involves a preliminary preparation interview with both police officers and young people; giving us an opportunity to explain the work. Those who choose to participate in the project then meet for a 3-4 hour session approximately 2 weeks later. The project is entirely voluntary for all parties and only works if it is voluntary. All participants are rigorously risk assessed.

Follow up sessions develop the needs that have come out of the group work.

Further follow up work can include creating a core group of police and young people ambassadors.

Meet The Team


Charlotte Calkin


Alongside the Police & Youth Engagement Forum Charlotte has a number of roles in the restorative justice field.

Charlotte trained as a restorative justice facilitator in 2010 and is now an accredited practitioner with the Restorative Justice Council. She is one of the Restorative Justice Council’s 50 champions. Charlotte is also a Qualified Trainer to deliver restorative justice training. She delivers courses for the Restorative Justice Council on Working with Victims throughout the Restorative Justice Process.

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Charlotte successfully ran the Observer Programme for Why me?, which invites key decision-makers from Government, the Judiciary and other Criminal Justice Agencies to learn more about the restorative justice process Charlotte delivers Awareness Raising For Restorative Justice with the RJC and Why me? Charlotte has also delivered these sessions at the European Forum For Restorative Justice.

Charlotte produced a film with Why me? & the RJC on restorative justice in action; it can be found on the training page. It is a re-enactment of a restorative justice meeting as an invaluable resource for training and awareness raising purposes.

Charlotte is a certified executive coach currently working with Deena Gornick Associates; she works on personal and professional development. She delivers courses with Deena as part of Leadership Programmes focussing on Presentation Skills and Team Building; clients include Red Bull, Unipart and Allergan. Charlotte also specialises in conflict resolution.

Charlotte started her career working as a theatre arts facilitator, primarily in youth and community theatre; she then spent 16 years running her own award winning design business.

Charlotte is very proud to run a TEDx conference, entitled TEDxYouth@Bath; since 2011 the conference has invited 450 young people in and around her hometown of Bath. The conference engages with 19 schools and feedback from the students is commonly “it has changed my view of the world.” This view was echoed by the Guardian newspaper that wrote in a half page article “lives changing at TEDxYouth@Bath.”

Charlotte Calkin 2015


Paul Mukasa

Restorative Justice - Trustee

Paul has been a volunteer facilitator with Restorative Gloucestershire for five years, working on a wide range of cases involving neighbourhood disputes, burglary, accidental death, domestic abuse, and homicide. He started his restorative career working in Gloucester Prison facilitating restorative interventions with the offenders there. He has co-developed and run the Northampton PCC initiated Police and Youth Engagement Project, which brought officers and young people together to examine their perceptions of each other, discuss their attitudes and behaviours and improve relationships...

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He was the lead facilitator in Gloucestershire Constabulary’s Black Youth Forum which examined relationships between Gloucester Police Officers and the local Black Community. He has continued his development since his initial training in 2010 by attending restorative approaches courses on Domestic Violence, Sexually Harmful Behaviour, Sensitive and Complex Cases and Gang Related Crime. He is also a mentor for new volunteers.

Paul has worked in secondary sector education in Inner London, developing and producing Learning Resources, teaching Media Studies and Photography. He has also developed and run youth clubs in Gloucestershire including a successful circus workshop focusing on bullying which won a Phillip Lawrence Award.

Paul has been involved in theatre lighting design and production both in the West End and at the Edinburgh Festival. He is currently the Chair of a successful and long running Beer Festival which raises around forty thousand pounds annually for good causes.


Feedback from police officers:

I just wanted to say what an enjoyable experience it was being part of the engagement with the young people yesterday. I found it extremely enlightening and can really see the importance of this kind of engagement in the future for more officers. 'We have all come away with a greater understanding of perceptions of what to expect and how to behave towards each other. ````they were a great bunch of kids and I could clearly see their eagerness and, most importantly, their openness which is something we can all learn from. It was an enjoyable and enlightening evening.' 'Just wanted to say thank you to you and Paul, as I stated to you, my initial thoughts about the course was “What are we doing this for, there is going to be a bunch of youngster who won’t want to talk to us, so what’s the point”, however It was very enjoyable, and it was good to hear about what the youth of today think of us, and for us to have the opportunity to explain why we sometimes behave the way we do.' 'Thank you for last night. It was good fun as well as breaking down some of the barriers that exist between the youth and police.'

Feedback from training course:

The content of the course was unique in how 'up to date' it was. RJ approaches have clearly moved on since my initial training and you cleverly taught us how and why. We all benefitted from your wonderful, enthusiastic and fun teaching style as well as your huge and diverse knowledge and experience. I feel without a doubt it is the best RJ training I have had so far. I think we sent you in all sorts of different directions but it was amazing to see you handle our requests so calmly and creatively. I had a real sense of you as a practioner in the thick of it and your advice therefore is, as I've said, invaluable. 'Charlotte was absolutely brilliant; very knowledgeable as an RJ facilitator and trainer which allowed flexibility for the best possible learning to take place. Lots of new ideas to take forward.' 'Charlotte was extremely knowledgeable and was able to apple practical experience to highlight particular poins/questions/concerns. I had a fabulous 3 days.'

Feedback from coaching work:

just to say thank you - the meeting with "........" on Monday was heavy but it went well and I feel much better prepared for the challenges ahead. 'On both personal and professional level I feel transformed. I can never thank you enough.'


REF can offer a variety of training options. We frequently run restorative justice awareness raising sessions and also offer bespoke training in restorative justice. She is currently delivering all the training packages for Wiltshire PCC. For feedback on our training and coaching please see the comments page. Charlotte delivers training for counties nationwide. She is currently delivering all the training packages for Wiltshire PCC. Her training includes:
  • Level 1 Restorative Justice Facilitator Training
  • Level 2 Restorative Justice Facilitator Training
  • Confidence in Facilitation Training: including Shuttle, restorative letters and a restorative toolkit.
  • Complex and Sensitive Casework Training
  • Mentoring and Supervision
REF has a wide and varied range of experience in the restorative field. We have facilitated over 50 restorative face to face meetings, from neighbourhood disputes through to homicide. We have facilitated cases involving young people, gangs and family conflict. We are trained in delivering RJ in cases of sexual harm and complex & sensitive cases and have great experience in the safe delivery of RJ in these challenging areas.

REF can also offer supervision.

Please find below a film of a real restorative justice meeting recreated using the verbatim process that Charlotte produced for Why me? and the RJC. It is an excellent training tool and also offers a deeper understanding of the process of restorative justice.


REF can help you deliver excellence in restorative justice.

As a result of our wide and broad experience we have been employed to offer expert guidance to fledgling organisations. We also have worked in the secure estate to give guidance around best practice and provide solutions to the obstacles in the delivery of restorative justice. Charlotte’s coaching background encourages organisations to work to find solutions applicable to their needs. Charlotte and Paul have also developed a process using restorative approaches to build the relationship between offenders and their families in order to give support, heal harm and co-create a healthy future. This work is very beneficial to the secure estate. Please contact us at: to find out how we can help you.


Helping people to find confidence and clarity in their personal and professional life

Coaching assumes that you have all the answers within you The nature of our work is to work together to support you in achieving the aims that you have set out for the sessions. There are many exercises that the coach can draw on but the main work is through listening and posing questions that support you to move forward and create actions. Coaching differs from therapy because it is forward moving not retrospective. Coaching is not mentoring, which is a more directive process.

Sessions are designed to suit you and can vary in length. Initially we would hold an introductory ‘chemistry session,’ which can be via phone, skype or face to face and is to look at ways of working together successfully. It is free of charge.

Costs: These vary on whether the sessions are by phone, skype or in person. I usually work for up to 6 sessions with clients.

As well as private clients, my corporate clients have included staff in a residential PRU, RSPCA staff and police officers in several counties.I also work with Deena Gornick Associates, delivering workshops on confidence, gravitas and presentation skills; clients include Red Bull, Allergan and Unipart.

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