Who we are

Shannon Trust supports thousands of prisoners a year to transform their lives by unlocking the power of reading. We inspire and train prisoners who can read to teach prisoners who can’t.

Our vision

We believe that every prisoner can be a reader

By giving people in prison the chance to unlock the power of reading with the Shannon Trust, they are changing their lives and the lives of those around them.

Men and women gain new skills, grow in confidence and can take part in everyday activities in prison and on release. They can fill in forms, take part in education and training, apply for jobs and share their newly found joy of reading with their children, wider family and friends.

I feel very proud of myself that I have taken this bad time in my life and I am making the best of it by trying to give back to others and by bettering myself

Learner who became a Mentor, HMP Pentronville
Our History

Shannon Trust was started by Christopher Morgan in 1997 following a long correspondence with a life sentenced prisoner, Tom Shannon, in a scheme run by The Prison Reform Trust.

Our Strategy

At the heart of Shannon Trust is the belief that Mentors and Learners and the range of people who support them are best placed to tell us what works and what doesn't. Read how we involved them in developing our new strategy and how our new strategy aims to unlock the power of reading for many more people.



To equip

We want everyone to be equipped with the vital skills they need to live a positive life. Learning to read is the key which unlocks these life skills.

We equip prison staff and our volunteers with the knowledge, skills and support they need to help prisoners to learn to read with a peer mentor.

To engage

We want everyone to see learning to read as a positive, life-enriching experience; an experience which is available to everyone.

We engage with and listen to everyone we work with, learning together and shaping our delivery.

To inspire

We want the experience of learning to read as an adult to be the first step in opening up opportunities. For Learners to go on to education and training, take part in everyday activities and share the joy of reading with family and friends.

We celebrate the positive experiences, achievements and life stories of the people we work with.