The Children's Fund and Crime Prevention

Paul Mason, David Prior

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    10 Citations (Scopus)


    Early intervention prevention programmes form a significant element in the UK's complex and sometimes contradictory youth justice system. This article focuses on one such national programme in England, the Children's Fund, which has combined a broad aim of tackling children's social exclusion with a specific objective of reducing youth crime and anti-social behaviour, influenced by the Youth Justice Board's risk factors paradigm. In order to understand how these aims have been pursued in practice, the article discusses findings from a 'Theory of Change' evaluation of a range of preventative initiatives developed through a single Children's Fund programme located in a large English city. The article discusses the implications of this kind of programme for the development of socially inclusive interventions with children and young people thought to be 'at risk' of involvement in crime and anti-social behaviour, but also draws attention to uncertainties and tensions in the relationship between risk-based crime prevention interventions and initiatives addressing broader aspects of young people's social exclusion. The advantages of the Theory of Change approach to the evaluation of complex initiatives are also briefly considered.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)279-296
    Number of pages18
    JournalCriminology and Criminal Justice
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2008


    • risk
    • social exclusion
    • prevention
    • children
    • evaluation


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