Rocker BILLY BRAGG’s initiative to bring musical equipment to British prisoners has dramatically reduced the number of criminals who reoffend.
Bragg’s Through The Guitar Doors campaign - named after The Clash’s 1978 track - encourages inmates to express themselves musically in sessions with the star, and has already been proven to reduce the risk of prisoners being sent back to jail.
Only 10-15 per cent of convicts who engaged in the program before parole have reoffended, as opposed to the national average of 61 per cent.
Bragg, 50, says, "It seemed to me something that all musicians would be able to see the value of immediately. "If only because all musicians are already keenly aware of just what a contribution music can make to life, and how it can help you transcend your surroundings no matter how bleak they appear." The Clash star Mick Jones has also pledged his support to the campaign, which won the sponsorship of Gibson Guitars this week (ends11Jan08) and to date has raised more than $20,000.
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