People who have had difficult pasts, including ex-offenders and people in recovery from addiction, are often desperate to turn their lives around. But sadly, there are many obstacles in their way. Stigma and negative stereotypes are preventing them from achieving the change they so badly want.

Many have also experienced abuse and trauma during childhood, as well as mental health problems. Their addictions and negative behaviour can stem from these unresolved issues. Research has found:

  • Negative experiences during childhood increases the risk of becoming an alcoholic by 700%1
  • 75% of people in recovery and ex-offenders felt that they would be turned down for jobs for disclosing their past
  • A quarter of people in recovery had been turned down at least three times after disclosing their past2

More Than My Past is a national campaign that doing something about this. We’re showing that ex-offenders and people in recovery not only want to change and succeed – they can and do! We’re doing this by sharing stories of people from all walks of life – helping to show the inspirational truth about those who have overcome addiction and offending. You can get involved today by sharing your story, joining the movement, or finding help for yourself or someone you know.  

About the Forward Trust

More Than My Past is led by The Forward Trust. We’re a national charity that helps people break the cycle of addiction and offending. In 2018-19, we helped more than 15,000 people in prisons and the community. More than a third of our staff have lived experience of either addiction or offending.


1. CDC-Kaiser Permanente Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study  2. Forward Trust social impact report 2018