Denise Tye from Castleford was placed on Community Payback after she failed to declare changes to her circumstances while continuing to accept state benefits.
This means Denise had to complete a set number of unpaid work hours for a particular community project in her case the local YMCA charity shop.
Community Payback projects vary from maintaining the grounds of parks; churches; cemeteries; local football; cricket and sports clubs; schools and parks through to helping to run clubs for the elderly and vulnerable adults with learning difficulties. In addition, offenders who have been rigorously risk assessed can also be placed directly with charities and community groups, such as helping to run charity shops.
Denise said: “I can’t believe how far I have progressed since being given a court order to do unpaid work. From the nightmare of being arrested, charged and convicted a new and bright future has opened up to me.
“West Yorkshire CRC community payback officer Parvez Faeisal and his colleagues have been so supportive throughout the whole process and helped me find a new purpose.
“I have discovered so much about myself and what I am capable of. Hopefully my experience will have an impact on other people who I can show there is a way to make you contribution back into your local community.”
“Hopefully my experience will have an impact on other people who I can show there is a way to make you contribution back into your local community”
Earlier this year Denise was named the new deputy manager at the YMCA store in Pontefract after successfully completing her community service order.
Colleagues at the YMCA said: “We were really impressed with Denise’s work at our Pontefract store where she proved to be a very personable and dedicated person. We are delighted she is joining us a trusted full-time colleague.”
Parvez Faeisal, from West Yorkshire CRC and Denise’s case manager, said: “Offenders really do benefit from community payback – it helps in their rehabilitation and ensures they put something back into their local community. Denise has proven that reliability, hard work, ethics and a positive attitude will be rewarded.”
When Denise completes her initial training at the YMCA store in Pontefract she is hopeful that she might eventually manage a new store in Castleford which the YMCA plans to open shortly.