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Sefton’s Public Engagement Panel has reached it’s 10-year milestone.


Sefton Council is delighted to be celebrating Sefton’s Public Engagement and  Consultation Panel’s 10th Anniversary.

 The Council and several partners developed the panel to ensure they collectively listen to residents and give them the opportunity to have a say in the services that are delivered.

 One of the ways this is done is by going out into our communities to carry out engagement and consultation activities. It is the panel’s responsibility to ensure these consultations are delivered effectively.

 The panel includes representatives from Sefton Council, South Sefton and Southport Clinical Commissioning Group, Sefton CVS, Sefton Young Advisors, Sefton Equalities Partnership, Merseyside Police, Mersey Fire and Rescue Service and Mersey Travel.

To find out more about how you can get involved follow this link; http://ow.ly/gEU130noiwn

 Cllr Paulette Lappin, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Regulatory, Compliance and Corporate Services and Chair of the Public Engagement and Consultation Panel, said:

 “We are all extremely happy that after 10 years this panel is still going strong and long may it continue. Working together and sharing the panel’s expertise has enabled us to successfully advise on 168 consultation and engagement activities, meaning we have listened to the views of thousands of residents from across the borough.

 “I am also very proud that this panel has been held up as an example of extremely good practice in relation to how we engage with the public and with our partners.

 “We are committed to delivering quality services which work in the best interest of residents, workers or visitors to Sefton. To do this, we recognise that we must engage with the public when making decisions and we encourage as many people as possible to give us their views.”

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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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.

Council to support those affected by decision to close Sand Dunes Nursery School

Sefton Council has vowed to ensure pupils and staff are fully supported following the decision that Sand Dunes Nursery School in Seaforth will close this summer.

The nursery has faced financial challenges for several years and the governing body at Sand Dunes felt they had no alternative but to formally ask Sefton Council to begin a statutory consultation to close the nursery.

After carefully considering all the information, Cabinet, at its meeting on Thursday, January 10, took the difficult decision to approve the closure of Sand Dunes Nursery.

Councillor John Joseph Kelly, Cabinet Member for Children, Schools and Safeguarding, said:

“I understand that this conclusion will be very upsetting for all those involved. It has been a very emotive time for everyone involved as it’s clear that it is a very much-loved nursery. I have been moved by the passion shown from parents and staff who have shown a huge amount of support for Sand Dunes remaining open.

“After spending a lot of time with the governing body and officers to explore every other option, there was just no other alternative to address the financial crisis the nursery is in. With no foreseeable increase in pupil numbers, increasing costs, and no way to balance the budget there was just nothing else that could be done.

“Our biggest priority now is to make sure parents are fully supported and that there will is no disruption to the education of the children who attend. I know that a small number of the children who go to Sand Dunes are vulnerable or have a special educational need or disability and we will make sure that their needs will be met when helping them to find alternative nursery places.”

To ensure everyone is fully supported when Sand Dunes closes on August 31st 2019, a closure project group will be established to address the many issues associated with a school closure. Support will also be provided for parents seeking alternative nursery places.

New Sefton base for Police Community Support Officers

A team of Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) from Merseyside Police has moved in to a new base at Magdalen House as part of Sefton Council’s move to locality-based working.

PCSOs Emma Cooke, Anthony Holden and Helen Holt will work from the ground floor of Magdalen House alongside a range of council services focusing on early intervention and prevention.

Magdalen House PCSOs Emma Cook Anthony Holden and Helen Holt

This way of working will allow the council and its partners to share information, resources and data more collaboratively. The PCSO team will also be able to work from agile suites at Netherton Activity Centre and Southport Town Hall.

Formerly based at Marsh Lane Police Station in Bootle, the PCSO’s relocation to Magdalen will see them collaborate with colleagues across the council to help children, families and vulnerable adults in Sefton tackle problems at an early stage.

Their immediate focus will be to identify people who regularly contact Sefton Council and Merseyside Police for help.

Emma Cooke, who has served as a PCSO for 10 years, says the team are already seeing the benefits of working at Magdalen House after moving in eight weeks’ ago.

PCSO Cooke said: “It’s great to be part of a big team and be able to share information immediately with partners. The aim of the Early Help plan is to work together to help our communities become more resilient, and having a base at Sefton Council means we take a more joined-up approach.

“Everyone at Sefton has been really welcoming and we are looking forward to getting to know everyone in the different teams.”

PCSO Helen Holt said the move will help all partners focus on the needs of local partners and communities more cohesively. She said: “Working together will help us identify areas of demand and allow us to share that information quickly with teams at Sefton Council.

“We’ll be able to cooperate and offer a service that is structured, focussed and tailored to the needs of the community.”

Anthony Holden, who has served as a PCSO for three years, says he is enjoying being in the new environment and is looking forward to closer partnership working. He said: “We already feel at home in Magdalen and it’s great to working with colleagues at Sefton as part of a ‘one-team’ approach.

“We hope our work will help reduce demand and allow us all to work smarter together for the benefit of individuals and families across Sefton.”

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said:” This move will really help us work as one team with partner agencies, to share resources and information to make us more resilient and effective.

“Having the PCSOs in Magdalen House means we can easily work together to help vulnerable people across Sefton, getting them help at an early stage to prevent their problems from escalating and ensuring they are well supported.”

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