Lindsey Pettit

Lindsey works in South Africa's criminal justice system to help young people in trouble with the law.

Guided by the principles of restorative and Biblical justice, Lindsey equips and rehabilitates young prisoners, preparing them for a safe and crime-free future upon their release. She does this through a unique combination of education and life skills training, support and advocacy.

Location: South Africa

Sector: Criminal Justice

Year Selected: 2011

Motivated by her faith in a God who loves justice and her heart for vulnerable young people, Lindsey works to bring hope and a future to young people in trouble with the law in South Africa.

Originally from the UK, Lindsey now lives in Cape Town. She has three children.

South African prisons are overcrowded, under-resourced and violent. They are no place for children, yet they're home to tens of thousands of teenagers - many of them still awaiting trial following months or years behind bars.

The vast majority of these young people turned to crime or gang violence following difficult childhoods and a dire lack of opportunity. And with prisons placing little or no emphasis on restorative justice, education or rehabilitation, many young people return to crime when they're released.

To help young people escape this cycle of crime and prison, Lindsey works within the criminal justice system to provide crucial support and opportunity.

Lindsey works with young prisoners awaiting trial as well as those who are already serving sentences.

In the absence of adequate state run programmes, Lindsey has established a prison school offering literacy and life skills courses. She's also produced a range of learning resources to engage inmates with the principles of Biblical and restorative justice.

Whenever she can, Lindsey helps young prisoners to identify and pursue studies that interest them, supporting them to secure life-changing school, college or work placements for when they're released.

In addition, Lindsey works with the Justice Alliance of South Africa to raise awareness of human rights violations among young prisoners, and enable them to access the legal support they need.

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