About Why me?
We are a national charity campaigning and advocating for greater access to Restorative Justice for victims in England and Wales. We work with victims, offenders, statutory services, voluntary organisations and Criminal Justice agencies and in 2015 launched our own Restorative Justice Service giving the right to everyone who has suffered as a result of crime to have their chance to talk about what happened.
About Our History
Why me? was set up by a victim of crime for victims of crime. Will Riley, an Islington businessman, was burgled by Peter Woolf. He met Peter in prison in a Restorative Justice meeting and had the opportunity to tell him how he felt. He challenged Peter and got some answers – his life changed- he could open his front door without fear. Following the meeting Peter went ‘straight’ after years of crime, meaning that hundreds more people did not become victims. This is the power and the potential of Restorative Justice.
About Our Work
The victim’s experience lies at the heart of what we do. Through our Restorative Justice service, advocacy, campaigning and policy work, we aim to increase public awareness, influence and inform criminal justice decision-makers.
Restorative Justice Service
Imagine the person who has caused you harm is sitting opposite… What would you say?
In 2015 we launched a Restorative Justice Service which encourages and helps victims of crime to take part in Restorative Justice process. For more details about the service email firstname.lastname@example.org and/or visit the Our Service tab.
We offer general advice, run awareness sessions and offer bespoke Victim Focus training to help Police and Crime Commissioners and RJ projects/services aimed keen to place victims’ needs at the forefront of the service delivery. Call us on 020 3096 7708 to speak with our team.
The Valuing Victims Campaign, launched to coincide with the Police and Crime Commissioners May 2016 elections. The campaign reviews Police and Crime Commissioners’ funding and delivery of local Restorative Justice Provision across England and Wales and also produced practitioners’ guide for those working with victims of crime throughout the Criminal Justice Process. See interactive map and download reports here.
The Observer Programme. We have been able to demonstrate the power of Restorative Justice to decision-makers by allowing them to be better informed about the restorative process. Some people have had the opportunity to witness conference between victim and the offender and others have attended our RJ Awareness sessions. Many of the people who champion Restorative Justice today observed meetings in a similar 2003/4 Programme out of London Crown Courts. Download our Observer Programme Leaflet.
Our RJ Service informs both our campaigning and policy work. In February 2016 we gave written and oral evidence to the Justice Select Committee Restorative Justice Inquiry.
To keep informed of current policy publications please contact us on: 020 3096 7708.
Meet The Team
We are a small charity with national reach. Our Board, facilitators and employees bring a wealth of experience both within the Criminal Justice, Voluntary and Social Enterprise sector.
Director, Lucy Jaffé
Lucy ensures that Why me? establishes strategical links with criminal justice agencies and stakeholders and works to develop fruitful partnerships. As a result the organisation is well informed and placed to speak on behalf of victims of all crime types. If you want to know more, or have something to say, we would be delighted to hear from you.
Trevor Watson has joined the Why me? team as the Victim Centred Policy and Campaigns Officer. Trevor is a retired senior police officer from Durham with previous restorative experience having worked with Restorative Solutions and the Restorative Justice Council, ‘His knowledge of national restorative work is an asset to our organisation and will further promote the benefits of restorative practice to the Police and Crime Commissioners’ said Lucy Jaffe, Director of Why-me?
Jyoti is currently our RJ Coordinator. She has over 20 years’ experience in various roles within probation. This foundation has assisted her with forming good networking with agencies within the CJS when moving forward RJ cases. She trained as a RJ facilitator in 2013 and is passionate about victims and offenders having access to RJ. If you are a victim of crime or if you’re interested in becoming a volunteer facilitator with Why me? then do get in touch.
Delighted to welcome our new Policy and Development Officer. Laura Ho joins us with a campaigning background in student politics. Laura will be developing our policy work and managing projects around the accessibility of RJ for victims facing serious and complex cases.
Anisha is currently studying Criminology and Criminal Justice at the University of Portsmouth. She is on a placement year with us. She hopes to use the knowledge and experience she gains to help her with future career decisions within the Criminal Justice System.
Founder, Will Riley
A London-based businessman who founded Why me? in 2009 following his own personal experience of Restorative Justice. Some years ago Will was the victim of an attempted burglary at his home; he confronted the intruder, a fight ensued, and Will handed the man over to the police. The burglar was Peter Woolf, a known career criminal, who has convicted and set to prison for the crime. They met again in a Restorative Justice meeting, to which both men agreed. It took place in Pentonville Prison, and that event changed both their lives. Peter and Will subsequently made a film of their encounter called The Woolf Within.