The Council of Europe (CoE) Programme Human Rights Education for Legal Professionals (HELP) aims at increasing the capacities of professionals at the national level to apply human rights standards in their daily work. Since 2015 the Programme offers high-quality training on human rights to a wide range of professionals: judges, prosecutors, prison and probation staff, lawyers, law enforcement officers, etc.

In 2020 HELP launched the EU-CoE project HELP Radicalisation prevention, Judicial response to terrorism & International cooperation in criminal matters’ (RP-TERR-ICCM) in partnership with the Confederation of European Probation (CEP). Under the framework of this project, probation staff have had the opportunity to benefit from various training and networking activities, including a series of European seminars on related topics; tutored versions of the course on Radicalisation prevention specifically tailored to probation services; and a High-level Conference on countering cross-border crime.

Since its launch, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, a total of 558 professionals from all EU member states have participated in the project activities, of whom 223 were prison and probation staff.

Why HELP courses?

HELP courses constitute an excellent resource for prison and probation staff, allowing them to deepen their knowledge and skills on different topics related to their daily work. These are some of the advantages:

  • All courses are completely free and open to professionals interested in a particular topic.
  • They have been designed and developed by top national and international experts ensuring a high quality of materials.
  • They are all online, offering great flexibility to users, who can follow the course at their own pace, when and where they wish.
  • They are user-friendly and interactive (including videos, links, quizzes).


What courses are relevant for probation officers?

HELP currently has a catalogue of 39 courses on many different topics related to human rights: from bioethics to trafficking in human beings, medicrime, refugee and migrant children, Human rights in sports, etc.

Courses that can be more relevant to probation staff include:

How to do a HELP Course?

The courses available on the HELP e-learning platform can be accessed by anyone at any time. The only requirement is to open an account on the platform (i.e. create a username and password). These are self-learning courses that users can do, in different languages, at their own pace.

There is also the option of joining a tutored course organised by the CEP, under the RP-TERR-ICCM or another project, for a selected group of participants, guided by a tutor who adapts the curses to your professional context (i.e. probation). Please check the CEP website for upcoming courses.


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