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Sefton Council is urging people to think about fostering in 2019

As we begin the new year, Sefton Council is highlighting the need for more foster carers and asking people to really think about taking on this new rewarding challenge.

If you can give a loving, stable home to some of our most vulnerable children, you will be helping them to achieve their full potential by giving them the best start in life.

Applications are open to people from all backgrounds regardless of race, religion, ethnicity, gender or sexuality. Couples, single people, disabled people and people from all cultures are welcome. There is no upper age limit to becoming a foster carer but you must be over 21, have a spare bedroom and be a UK citizen.

Sefton Council is committed to offering support to our carers every step of the way. This includes specialist and peer support, training and an excellent financial package.

Cllr John Joseph Kelly, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Children, Schools and Safeguarding, said; “There is now more of a need to recruit new carers than ever before. For the first time, the number of children looked after by Sefton has tipped the 500 mark. Our in house foster care capacity is full and we need to recruit a least 20 more additional carers by the end of this year, in order to meet the current demand.

“Becoming a foster parent to a vulnerable child can completely turn their life around. I would urge anyone who has ever thought about it, to get in touch with us. It could be the best decision you ever make.”

Foster Carers, Yvonne & Carl said, “We really enjoy looking after the children we care for. Although sometimes it can be challenging, the rewards outweigh the challenges. The children achieve things they never thought they would, when you see the immense pride the children have in their achievements, however small, it does our hearts good.

“We’re not on our own, we get a tremendous amount of support from social workers. The children also get support from a team of people who take them out. The children look forward to this special time they have, and it gives us a little respite to recharge our batteries.”

To find out more about becoming a foster parent, you can visit our dedicated website https://seftonfostering.co.uk/ 

Or speak to one of the team on our freephone number 0800 923 2777

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Two charged following purse thefts in Sefton

Two people have been charged with theft and fraud offences following reports purses belonging to two women were stolen in Formby and Southport on 28 November 2018.

It was reported that the purse of an 83-year-old woman was stolen at Asda in Central 12 Shopping Park in Southport at 10.30am. The purse contained cash and cards and the card was later used to purchase items.

Between 11.15-11.45am the same day, a purse containing cash and cards was taken from a handbag belonging to an 86-year-old woman which had been placed in a trolley at Waitrose in Formby.

Anna Pauline Krezolek, 33 years, and Roman Siwak, 38 years, both of Gordon Road, Ilford, were charged with two counts of theft, four counts of fraud and one of theft by finding.

They were remanded in custody to appear at Liverpool Magistrates Court on Wednesday 16 January.

Baroness Newlove to visit Sefton school for anti-gang initiative

A scheme which sees schoolchildren across Sefton receive vital advice and tips on staying safe from gangs and crime is being honoured by the government’s Victim’s Commissioner.

Baroness Helen Newlove will visit St Oswald’s Primary in Netherton later this month to observe the successful partnership between Sefton Council and the Get Away ‘N’ Get Safe (GANGS) initiative.

GANGS course leader James Riley, a former probation officer, works closely with Sefton Council’s Localities teams to deliver an intensive educational, preventative and diversionary programme to schools across the borough to warn young people on the dangers of gang lifestyle.

The work by GANGS and Sefton Council has now been recognised on a national level, with Baroness Newlove observing a session at St Oswald’s on January 25 as an example of best practice.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said: “Through our Sefton Safer Communities Partnership we identified that there was a need for a project that could be implemented at an early stage to deter children from making bad life decisions.

“The impact that James’ sessions have had is incredible and we are always receiving feedback from schools and parents commending the work that GANGS have done

“We look forward to showing Baroness Newlove the incredible work we have done in our communities.”

James Riley, founder of GANGS, added: “The partnership between GetAwayNGetSafe and Sefton has developed incredibly well over the last few years.

“We want to use GANGS to inspire young children at an early age to make positive decisions about their lifestyles in the future.

“Through our early intervention work and by changing attitudes and behaviour, we will continue to make Sefton a safe and secure borough for all.”

Emma Murtagh, Head Teacher of St Oswald’s, said: “James has worked with a number of our pupils over the years and the partnership has been invaluable.

“The workshops are informative and provide an insight into the dangers of being in a gang, as well as how the law works.

“I hope that this work will continue to keep our younger generations from harm.”

For more information about the GANGS initiative please visit www.getaway-n-getsafe.co.uk/

Still time to give views about same day healthcare in south Sefton

NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is reminding people that there is still time to give their views and experiences about using and choosing different urgent care services when they need immediate or same day health advice or treatment.

The commissioner, which plans and buys the majority of healthcare for south Sefton residents, has been out and about encouraging people to get involved as part of a review of ‘urgent care’ services since early December 2018.

Urgent care includes services for physical and mental health problems ranging from pharmacies, GP practices, GP out of hours services, the NHS 111 phone line and website, walk-in centres, accident and emergency (A&E) departments/ and 999.

Up until 31 January 2019 the CCG is asking people to complete a questionnaire about these services for adults, children and young people. The information gathered will be used to help develop proposals for how urgent care could look in the future.

Dr Craig Gillespie, GP and acting chair for NHS South Sefton CCG, said: “From our conversations with residents over the past few years we know that some find the current range of urgent care services difficult to choose from and confusing. Sometimes when people don’t know which service to choose they use accident and emergency, which puts extra pressure on hospitals, and means that people might have to wait longer for their treatment.

“This review is the first step towards making sure that our services really meet local needs, so we have been encouraging as many people and NHS staff as possible to get involved and tell us what it’s like to use or work in these services and how they could be better and easier to choose from in the future.

“We’ve been out and about across south Sefton encouraging people to take part and would like to thank the organisations who have helped us reach residents so far, also a big thank you to those who have filled out a survey already.”

The review will also consider how new NHS national guidelines for urgent care services and the introduction of ‘Urgent Treatment Centres’ might be put into place in south Sefton.

NHS South Sefton CCG is carrying out its review with partners across north Merseyside as patients often use urgent care services across this wider area. So, the CCG is also encouraging residents in Southport and Formby who use urgent care services in north Merseyside to complete a survey.

Complete an online questionnaire and find out more on the CCG website: www.southseftonccg.nhs.uk

Healthwatch Sefton is helping us to make the questionnaire available to anyone who may find it difficult to take part online. So, for help to complete a questionnaire, request a paper version, or for another format call Freephone 0800 206 1304, email info@healthwatchsefton.co.uk or text 07434 810 438.

Is it time to ditch those stabilisers?

Sefton Council is excited to be bringing back our poplar, ‘Ditch Those Stabilisers’ cycling events.

During the session, children aged for and above can learn to ride a bike unaided.

Children who attend can have lots of fun, whilst learning lifelong cycling skills. The events, which take place a number of times throughout the year, always have a high success rate, as our enthusiastic staff from the highway safety team of a range of practical advice.

Sessions are free but you must book in advance.

Get involved at Litherland Sports Park, Boundary Lane on Tuesday, February 19 or Shoreside Primary School, Westminster Drive on Thursday February 21.

To register, call Sefton Council, on 0345 140 0845.

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