Sefton Council is rolling out pioneering new methods to support families of vulnerable children following a successful bid for Government funding.
Sefton is one of 15 local authorities to be awarded a share of £84m of new Department for Education innovation funding, which will help to reduce the number of children entering care by improving family stability.
Adopting the Family Valued model used so successfully by Leeds Council, Sefton and its partners will work with families to encourage long term changes to keep children safe.
The new project will see families receive person centred care and support at every step as strong relationships are fostered between workers and families.
These close relationships will mean that issues such as addiction, domestic violence and mental health can be tackled as they arise, creating a more stable environment for children.
Cllr. John Joseph Kelly, Cabinet Member for Children, Schools and Safeguarding, said:
“The funding from the DfE will be a catalyst for our family centred approach to supporting children at risk – adopting the Family Valued model represents an opportunity to make a lasting difference to those children by supporting their family units.”
Find out more about Strengthening Families and its projects across the UK at the Government website
Sefton Council is working with local colleges to support young people with special education needs and disabilities (SEND) into full time employment.
The Supported Internships programme, delivered in partnership with Hugh Baird College and Southport College, links young people with local employers to help them gain vital experience of the workplace.
The borough now far exceeds the national average for people with SEND in full time employment.
Now in its fourth year, Supported Internships helps equip young people for future roles with the aim of securing full time work.
Supported Internships is growing every year, with Mersey Care NHS the latest big organisation to join the programme.
Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Labour Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, said:
“Planning for the future of Sefton and creating economic opportunities has to mean something to everyone in our communities.
“I’m proud to see the Council and local colleges going some way to making this aspiration a reality through Supported Internships. The impact of this programme can’t be overstated. Nationally, among 18-64 year olds with a SEND, 6% are in full time work, for 16-24 year olds with a SEND using supported internships in Sefton, that figure jumps to 31%.
“Supported internships provide young people with vital experience, knowledge and crucially, confidence in the workplace. The internships have not only created full time employment but have also led to a further 48% of young people in full time volunteering roles.
“We’ve always known that young people with a SEND in Sefton have a lot to offer employers and it is brilliant to see that message breaking through as young people and local businesses continue to benefit.”
For more information on Supported Internships and further education opportunities for young people with SEND, visit Sefton’s Local Offer.
Visitors to Liverpool South Parkway will be able to step off a platform and in to a Premier League dressing room from Thursday 3rd October.
The station’s Mtogo convenience store has been transformed following a summer makeover.
The store, one of the busiest in the Merseyrail network, will show off its new look to passengers at Thursday’s ‘fun day’, with freebies and games taking place.
Cadbury will be handing out free chocolate and football-themed goodies and there will be a foosball table in the shop for passengers to exercise their competitive streak.
There will also be a competition for passengers to win either two Premier League football match tickets or a family ticket to Cadbury World by answering the following question:
How many teams are in the Premier League?
The competition runs until Friday 1st November. Passengers can enter by filling out an entry card at Liverpool South Parkway’s Mtogo store.
This month as part of our Year of Friendship campaign, we’ve been focusing on children and young people and the projects designed to benefit them. We’re also highlighting some of the amazing youth workers who are always on hand to give one-to-one and group support.
We caught up with one of Sefton Council’s youth workers Sue Logie. She is the lead worker for New Beginnings, Sefton’s LGBTQ+ youth group which provides a safe space for young people to socialise and learn life skills.
Sue put’s her heart and soul into working with young people especially those who are LGBTQ+. So much so that she has recently won an award for Best Campaigner at the prestigious LCR Pride Awards 2019.
We caught up with Sue to ask her about her journey as a youth worker and why she continues to support young people.
Sue: For me personally, New Beginnings is like my baby so to speak. When I was a young person struggling with my own identity I was unaware of any support for young people at that time, this was something I really struggled with. There was no support and there were no visible role models back then nor was LGBTQ+ in the media like it is today. So, when I first started working within the Youth Service back in 2014 being asked to work with the New Beginnings group was exciting and then when I was asked to lead on it, it was an honour. To see and be a part of the journeys the young people embark on with their identity and finding themselves is so rewarding, and seeing them grow as a young person and being comfortable and happy within themselves just takes your breath away at times. To be able to provide a safe space and for young people to get the support I lacked is amazing, we have evolved slightly and we have had parents/carers ask for our support also which is always a pleasure, sometimes for parents to have that space to talk is nice also. More recently we have had a number of schools ask for support also, so it’s nice to see our schools trying to support our young people more especially around LBGTQ+.
Q: What are some of the main highlights in your career working with young people?
Sue: Wow! This is a difficult one! There are lots of positive experiences and some almost life changing for the young people and for me. I think one that really sticks with me is a young person who I worked with who just didn’t really know where they fitted or who they were, we did some 1-1 sessions and the young person attending New Beginnings and over about 2 years I seen this young person just grow and we went from different sexualities to then actually the young person saying they thought it was their gender that was this issue – well not issue, but they felt they wanted to identify as the opposite gender – so we did some work around this and now that young person is attending the Gender Identity Clinic and is much happier within themselves. All I did was to be there to listen and allow the space for that young person to be them and spent a lot of time with his parents supporting them also.
Q: It’s great news that you’ve been nominated for Best Campaigner at the Prestigious LCR Pride Awards 2019. How does it feel to know you’re hard work has been recognised in this way?
Sue: Shocked and overwhelmed. There is a very good friend of mine in the same category, who has been working campaigning for the LGBTQ+ community a lot longer than me so to make the final 3 for me is an achievement itself especially being named with someone who has done so much for the community before me.
Q: Moving forward do you have any aspirations about how society on a whole can improve support for young people?
Sue: I would ideally like to see a shift in the way LGBTQ+ people are seen, there is still a lot of homophobia/transphobia/biphobia, but on top of this, I feel any sort of ‘phobia’ I would like to see minimalised or eradicated – but with this people are not born hateful they are taught it. So, stigmas/stereotypes etc I would love to see them broken. And I feel like also youth work being seen across the country and a valuable service to our young people. These young people are our future leaders, Armed/Public service representatives and more. The valuable work that we carry out with our young people can be life changing for some and can bring them away from paths they shouldn’t really go down.