Bridging the Gap (BTG) was started in the early 1970s by Thelma White.
Thelma was a humanist and started befriending people who had just been released from prison or who were due for release. As a consequence, she began to see that there was a great difference between the help that prisoners were supposed to receive and what happened in reality. In order to be of more help, she started learning about the benefits system and housing law. She made educational leaflets and classes available. Thelma died in 1984.
Today, BTG is a Registered Charity and a Limited Company, has over 70 full members and supports a network of over 3,000 prison penpals in Britain and abroad. A dedicated nucleus of unpaid staff are available to give talks and run workshops for prisoners, prison service staff, probation staff and other interested parties.