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Friends of Sefton Coast celebrate bumper Year Of The Volunteer campaign

Everybody knows Sefton has few and far between rivals for the title of most beautiful British coastline!

The 22 miles spanning between Southport and Seaforth are some of the most iconic, idyllic and important stretches of coastline in the UK and are home to a menagerie of fauna and flora.

But it takes a lot of work to make our coastline the sandy success that it is!

The Green Sefton coast and countryside division are supported by hundreds of volunteers called the Friends of Sefton Coast, who give up just a small portion of their time throughout the year to keep our coastline beautiful.

Through the 2018 Year Of The Volunteer, an incredible 2,300 people volunteered 5,200 hours of their time over 76 clean-up events that saw thousands of bags of rubbish cleared from our coastline.

From beach cleans to buckthorne bashing, there’s always plenty to get your teeth into on the Sefton Coast and Green Sefton are always looking for more people to get involved.

To find out more about our list of events and activities between January & March 2019, or to get involved, check out the Friends of Sefton Coast Calendar

To register as a FOSC volunteer, click here

Can you make a difference to a vulnerable teenager’s life?

Sefton Council has launched a recruitment campaign to attract foster carers interested in looking after teenagers.

The Council has created new specialist teen foster carer roles and is looking for people who can provide intensive one-to-one care to some of Sefton’s most vulnerable young people who would otherwise be placed in residential care.

A package of support has been developed to reflect the complexities of this challenging but rewarding role, which includes a bespoke training package, peer support and competitive pay.

Council John Joseph Kelly, Cabinet Member for Children and Families, said:

“There are many different reasons why a teenager has come into our care. Most will have had a difficult start to their life, often including problems related to drugs or alcohol, physical or emotional abuse. Young people may appear angry, resentful or stressed, when really what they need is the love, stability and support of a good caregiver.

“Because we recognise the complexities of fostering a teenager we have created these new roles as foster carers could really help to make a difference and re-write a teenager’s story for the better. We’re looking for carers who can build and maintain a meaningful relationship with young people, and understand the impact of a young person’s past experiences and how that affects their behaviour. There is a misconception that teenagers can be a handful, however, what we have to remember is that the behaviour of each individual has been influenced by their past. We need carers to help them develop and provide them with a sense of belonging.”

A job advert has been launched and is targeting professionals who have some prior experience of working with young people in a structured environment, such as policing, emergency services or youth work/probation.

If this sounds like a role for you, visit; http://ow.ly/qXLG30myBH for more information, together with a job description and application process.

Sefton Council Proposes Changes to Council Tax on Long Term Empty Homes

Sefton Council is running a consultation on a proposed change in Council Tax charges for empty homes across the borough.

New legislation will give Sefton Council additional powers to increase the Council Tax premium charged to properties that have been empty and largely unfurnished for more than two years from 50% to 100% with effect from April 1, 2019.

There are about 645 homes in Sefton that have been empty for two years or more (excluding those that are exempt from Council Tax, for example where the owner has gone to live elsewhere to receive care, or provide care to someone else).

The proposed increase in the empty homes premium is intended to encourage owners of long term empty domestic properties to bring them back into use and to increase the amount of Council Tax income raised from those that continue to leave their properties empty.

Cllr Paulette Lappin, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member Regulation and Compliance, said: “We are currently seeking views on the on the proposed changes to the premium charged in Sefton from April 1, 2019, as well as other potential changes to the premium that could be made in the future. Please take the time to give us your views and get in touch.

“As well as charging the empty homes premium, there are other Council initiatives to help bring empty homes back into use like the property accreditation scheme that also helps empty owners find tenants for their property.”

The consultation is open until December 3, 2018. For more information and to share your views please visit https://www.sefton.gov.uk/council-tax/council-tax-empty-homes-consultation.aspx

Bootle schoolchildren set to raise their aspirations

Two schools in Sefton are set to benefit from a new programme aimed at getting their pupils to think about their futures.

The Raising Aspirations programme, designed by Positive Footprints, aims to improve the life chances of young people by building resilience, developing employability skills and opening up the world of work.

Students at Springwell Park Primary School and Netherton Moss Primary School are set to be the first two schools in the borough to benefit from the programme.

Raising Aspirations is a fun and engaging way to get primary school children to start thinking about their futures and developing skills which will benefit them as they move through life. The programme includes a number of business events, which give students the chance to speak to a range of businesses. In the past, this has included large multinational companies, such as Santander and North West based businesses, such as M&Y Maintenance and Construction.

Lesley Burrows, Managing Director of Positive Footprints, said: “We are delighted to bring our programme to pupils in Bootle and to be partnering with these two fantastic schools.

“Children are now forming opinions on their future career when they’re as young as seven, so it is really important that we open the world of work in primary schools.

“Raising aspirations and improving life chances for our young people should be high on everyone’s agenda. These pupils are not just our future workforce, they will form our future society, and we believe this programme will set them up to win.”

David Hird, Deputy Headteacher at Netherton Moss Primary School: “It is never too early to have an aim in life, even in Primary School, we all need something to work towards.

The final destination may change over time but the skills and experiences gained along the way help to ensure future success”

The Raising Aspirations programme is being supported by the Sovini Group, which is funding 10 schools across Merseyside.

To find out more about Positive Footprints, visit positivefootprints.co.uk

Sefton’s Community Learning Service celebrate learners and staff!

Sefton’s Community Learning Service held its annual awards ceremony on Tuesday (August 7) to celebrate the hard work and dedication of both its learners and staff.

Now in its 15th year, the awards are seeing an increase in the number of participants achieving qualifications. This year 40 residents achieved a recognised qualification this year with over 400 qualifications between them.

The awards also present an opportunity for staff to be recognised for their hard work and this year tutors Carol Ann Duffy, Alyson Davies, Jayne Moss, Maureen Cant and Karon McGeer were all awarded for their services.

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Labour Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills said:

“Congratulations to all of the learners this year who have managed to achieve over 400 qualifications between them. This is a huge accomplishment and fits in with our 2030 vision of building resilient communities by supporting residents gain skills and qualifications.

“The awards are also a great way to celebrate the tutors who continue to dedicate time and support to help Sefton residents gain new skills and recognised qualifications that can help to improve their employment prospects in the future.”

 To find out more about Sefton’s Community Learning Service visit www.sefton.gov.uk/communitylearning

 

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