Golden visits will take you to them, but Purple Visits will bring them back to you.


Purple Visits have always held on to, and is proud to run alongside, the priceless golden thread. 


The Golden thread which is extracted from Lord Farmers 2017 review The Importance of Strengthening Prisoners’ Family Ties, to Prevent Reoffending and Reduce Intergenerational Crime, which states that family contact is invaluable when it comes to reducing reoffending, and improving mental health within our prison system.  Lord Farmer wrote:


“This report is not sentimental about prisoners’ families, as if they can, simply by their presence, alchemise a disposition to commit crime into one that is law abiding. However, I do want to hammer home a very simple principle of reform that needs to be a golden thread running through the prison system and the agencies that surround it. That principle is that relationships are fundamentally important if people are to change.”

Purple Visits cling on to this Golden thread, as we know, and understand, the part that video calling can play in maintaining these all-important family ties.


“During prison lockdown, we all understand that video calls may have been, temporarily, the best communication channel available. And we know that some families have mobility and other issues, and for some, at times, visiting is too difficult. Video calls can also be crucial for people whose family are overseas.”


The above quote is an extract from the recent article by The Prison Advice and Care Trust.  The quote highlights a very important point… there are many people who are quite simply unable to travel to visit a loved one who is a resident in an establishment, which could be a notable distance away from the family home. 


Inability to travel may be a result of old age, illness, financial attachments alongside visiting, or having very young children, as well as a host of other possible reasons.


Is it right that those people be left with no visual contact at all?  Should the resident miss out on that vital visual contact completely?


With the recent announcement of the second lockdown beginning at the start of November, and not being reviewed until the beginning of December, social visits are likely to be slowly reintroduced across the prison estate again, however, vulnerable members of society may be reluctant to risk the sometimes-long distance travel, and others may suffer anxiety leaving the house during the pandemic.


An extract from Lord Farmers review (below) regarding video calling technology also highlights this, and the importance of video calling for some families.


“Using video calling technology should be available for the small percentage of families or individual family members who cannot visit frequently or at all due to infirmity, distance or other factors.”

 “On one prison visit I met a man who had been in the care system since he was a young child whose only relative with whom he was still in contact was his 93 year old grandmother. He knew she would never be able to visit, but considered that if she had help to operate video calling technology that would enable them to see each other again.”146147148

Purple Visits can play a vital role in giving something that has never been possible before, and improving the entire picture for residents of our UK establishments, with the long-term goal of improving mental wellbeing, and reducing reoffending.  Looking at, and addressing, the bigger picture.


Just as phone calls, letters, and social visits all have a place in our society, and a place within the golden thread, we believe Purple Visits does too.  Those golden social visits will take you to them, but Purple Visits will bring them back to you.


Giving residents the opportunity to virtually visit their home, not only gives a sense of belonging, but can also reinforce a role within the household, a role which carries forward a sense of purpose, and can improve general wellbeing, and have a positive effect on mental health.


During a Purple Visit video call you can show them rooms of the house, new plants in the garden, and any pets that you have at home.  You are able to share the time with other family members and friends, and it really doesn’t matter where you are in the country, or where you are in the world.


You see, video calling technology does not, and will not, ever replace face to face visits, but instead needs to settle into it’s own, special role within the delicate framework of helping residents to maintain those vital family ties.  Those family ties which can assist reform and change, those family ties that are absolutely essential in reducing self-harm within our prison system. 


The Purple Visits software supports residents in the ability to ‘visit’ their own homes, and see the faces of loved ones, be that human or animal, and to some people that could make all the difference.