Vulnerable children will get a better start in life after Wakefield Council was given an extra £500,000 funding for an initiative that helps struggling families.
The council has been recognised as one of 51 ‘best performing areas’ and was given the additional funding as part of an expansion to the government’s Troubled Families programme.
The money will enable the authority to work with an extra 450 families on issues such as truancy, crime, anti-social behaviour, debt, unemployment, domestic violence and children at risk of being put into care. The programme will also be expanded to include under fives and poor health issues. Getting adults back into work will also be a priority, with the Department for Work and Pensions providing 300 specialist employment advisors for troubled families.
The council has already ‘turned around’ 930 families, which no longer need intensive support since getting involved with the project. The council will receive £800 for every family it turns around.
Coun Maureen Cummings, who has responsibility for communities, said: “We’re delighted that our work has been recognised and that we will be able to help even more families tackle the root causes of their problems. We’ve got a model that works and with this extra money we’ll be able to increase our plans to expand this critical support.
“Many of the families welcome our support and there are massive savings to the public purse from the reduced need for police intervention to a decrease in costs to the NHS.”