Funded by South Lanarkshire Council with support from its Youth Justice Officer

The U-Turn Project was a Young Offenders’ Project that worked with young men involved in violence and knife crime. This was an eight-week project whereby participants attended two workshops each week. The U-Turn Project was a condition of the young person’s community order. 

The aim of the project was to use drama and graffiti art to challenge their thinking, attitudes and behaviours and to increase self-awareness. It offered alternative behaviours in an effort to reduce re-offending and to broaden the participants’ attitudes and views on violent behaviour, including looking at their own behaviour and reactions to different types of situations. 

Each participant gave oral feedback through a video diary after each workshop. This was used to measure the success of the workshops and if attitudes had changed throughout the eight weeks. The U-Turn Project ran over four months with two different groups of young men.

The end result was participants performed to family members at the end of the eight weeks. This was a very positive experience for both the young men and their families who saw them in a completely different and positive setting.


“It made me think about myself because I don’t normally get asked about myself.”

“Now I know there’s other ways of dealing with stuff.”

“You can sit and talk about these things in a group, but looking at it in a different way can have a higher impact.”