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Have your say on proposed Netherton housing development

A consultation by Sefton Council has now begun to gauge residents’ views on a proposed housing development in the Buckley Hill Lane area of Netherton.

The site under consideration is the land to the east of Buckley Hill Lane and west of Higher End Park, which was the site of the former ‘Z-Blocks’ residential development.

The site was allocated for housing in Sefton’s Local Plan adopted in April 2017.

The proposed development would consist of approximately 40 homes would consist of 2, 3 and 4 bedroom properties, including both market sale and affordable houses.

Residents in the area are being asked to give their views via public consultation ahead of any planning proposals being submitted for consideration.

Residents have until July 20 to give their views in writing or via email on the proposal.

There will also be an opportunity for residents to attend a drop-in session to discuss the proposal with both Sefton Council and project agents GL Hearn.

The drop-in session will take place at Netherton Activity Centre from 5pm on Thursday July 11.

Letters have already been sent out to residents who are directly affected by the proposals but all views are welcomed.

To submit your views on the proposals please email sefton.info@glhearn.com or write to GL Hearn, The Observatory, 8th Floor, The Observatory Chapel Walks, Manchester, M2 1HL.

Young People in Sefton to benefit from FREE online counselling

Young people in Sefton can now benefit from completely free online counselling to help them in their time of need, thanks to a new collaboration from local health and wellbeing partners.

Sefton Council, NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG has commissioned Kooth for young people in the area.

The service will provide free and anonymous mental health and wellbeing support to local young people aged 11-18, with access to online counselling, self-help materials and a safe online community of young people 365 days a year. Support can be found at www.kooth.com

Kooth, accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy, also offers peer-to-peer support, an online magazine, access to moderated forums and goal setting and mood tracking tools from any connected device.

The site is open 24 hours a day; one-to-one counselling sessions with a qualified counsellor are available from 12-noon until 10pm on weekdays, and from 6pm until 10pm on weekends.

The service has been commissioned to increase the number of early intervention services available and in response to young people requesting a digital solution in addition to existing local services.

Councillor John Joseph Kelly, Sefton Council Cabinet Member for Children, Schools and Safeguarding, said “We are delighted that Kooth is now available in Sefton. All children and young people should have access to mental health support when they need it.

“Being able to access good advice, guidance and support via mobile phone, tablet or computer is a great way to help make sure that children and young people can develop positive mental wellbeing.”

Fiona Taylor, chief officer at the CCGs in Sefton, said: “We are proud to be involved with Kooth, it will enhance support for young people with mental health issues in Sefton. We need services such as this to be easily accessible and available at a time when people need it most and this ticks all the boxes.

“We do think it helps being anonymous as some find it hard to speak face to face, this is ideal for people who are perhaps nervous about reaching out and we really do hope it helps them.”

Elaine Bousfield, from Kooth said, said: “We are delighted that we are now able to provide our support and counselling service to young people in Sefton. Digital mental health services like Kooth are beneficial to young people as they are anonymous and free from the stigma some individuals face. We hope through the new commission more young people will seek help for their mental health and wellbeing.”

Sefton’s school uniform bank needs your help!

Sefton Council are appealing for kind hearted residents to consider donating to the local authority’s annual school uniform bank.

The council’s Schools & Families teams are preparing their seventeenth annual school uniform bank but are desperately short of vital good quality blazers for those pupils most in need.

Swops, Sefton’s school uniform bank scheme, has been running since 2002 and continues to go from strength to strength thanks to donations from people across the borough.

Clothing items both old and new are accepted at Sefton run libraries and Town Halls throughout the year and are then distributed to families and children in need.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said: “In a perfect world we would not need food banks or school uniform banks but, sadly, they are a necessity.

“Last academic year we helped over four hundred schoolchildren and their families get access to much needed uniforms, from shoes to summer dresses and shorts.

“This year will be no different and we are appealing for our kind hearted communities to come together and help those families who are most in need. We really need good quality school blazers.

“Through the contribution of our residents we have been able to help those most in need and will continue to do so for as long as possible.”

To donate to Sefton’s uniform bank please visit one of the local authority’s library buildings or a Sefton Town Hall.

To access the scheme or for more information about uniform banks in Sefton please call 07837863075.

Sefton’s homelessness work praised by Local Government Association

Ongoing partnership work to help meet the health needs of people experiencing homelessness and rough sleeping in Sefton has been highlighted as best practice by the Local Government Association (LGA).

The LGA has used the excellent partnership work between Sefton Council, Public Health and Light For Life as a case study on how partners can help tackle health problems associated with homelessness.

While Sefton Council commissions the voluntary sector group, Light for Life, to provide a range of services for homeless people, many of this group were identified to have substance addictions as well.

The Council’s public health and housing support teams decided the solution lay in doing some integrated outreach work and as a result secured some short-term funding from the Government’s Rough Sleepers Initiative to pay for a clinical nurse prescriber.

This allowed them to get a Mersey Care nurse to work directly with the Light for Life outreach service. The nurse started accompanying the homeless service on its rounds in Southport town centre in early 2019 with some positive results.

homeless

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said: “It’s really rewarding to see the excellent partnership work taking place across the borough to tackle some of the health issues associated with homelessness being recognised by the LGA.

“Through this set up, the nurse carries out assessments, books the clients in for appointments and has even been able to hand out anti-overdose drug treatment.

“While this scheme is still in it’s infancy, we have been able to secure more funding so it will continue for another year. It could also be rolled out on a regional basis as an example of best practice as we continue to help some of the most vulnerable people in our communities.”

Greta Fenney, Chief Executive of Light for Life, added: “Having collected relevant data over a long period of time our service has worked hard to achieve results and the key to success has been partnership working.

“With a developing hospital in-reach service we expect further improved outcomes for this vulnerable group.”

To read the full case study, visit: https://local.gov.uk/sefton-outreach-drug-and-alcohol-support-rough-sleepers

Metro Mayor presents school ‘Year of the Environment’ drawing competition awards

Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, recently visited St Benedict’s RC Primary School in Netherton to present the awards in a drawing competition linked to the Liverpool City Region Year of the Environment.

The competition was the culmination of class work that saw the children learn about their local environment.  Six-year-old Lauren Williams scooped first prize with her drawing of a meandering river with five fish swimming down-stream, in clear waters.

Lauren’s family won tickets for the Blue Planet Aquarium while the runner-up Hope Jones won family passes to Knowsley Safari Park.

Emma Carrington, St Benedict’s primary school teacher, said: “St. Benedict’s School has been delighted to take part in this competition to highlight Liverpool City Region’s Year of the Environment. The children enjoyed learning all about the different animals and plants in Sefton and now have a greater appreciation for what a beautiful place we live in.”

Attending the competition presentation, Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, Steve Rotheram, added: “The Year of the Environment is all about raising awareness of the challenges facing our planet so it is great to see our local primary schools getting involved.  It is clear from the quality of their pictures that these children were really engaged in thinking about the world around them and the importance of looking after our environment.  I’m sure they could teach the grown-ups a thing or two!”

Councillor Carla Thomas, who is a governor at St Benedict’s and a deputy portfolio holder at Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, added: “By inviting the children of St Benedict’s Primary School to participate in a creative competition to commemorate the Liverpool City Region’s Year of the Environment. It was my aim to start to inspire the children in Netherton to become active and engage with an environmentally focussed project that shows you are never too young or too small to make a difference!

“By participating with an innovative activity it has encouraged young people to become responsible global activists, developing their understanding, empathy and a sense of responsibility. We can empower our young generation to protect their environment and motivate tomorrow’s leaders to help make our world a better and greener place.

“The children at St Benedict’s Primary School are delighted that the Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region has attended their awards ceremony to recognise their efforts and work highlighting the environmental issues that matter to them.

“St. Oswald ward can be proud of the children who are paving the way to inspire other youngsters to follow them by illustrating the fantastic landscapes we have in Sefton with an abundance of protective designations, such as the Red Squirrel Reserve in Formby, the Sefton Coastal Dune System and the special wildlife habitats, along the coast.

“What’s more, I am profoundly grateful to the Blue Planet Aquarium in Ellesmere Port and to Knowsley Safari Park for their very kind donations.”

The Liverpool City Region officially declared 2019 as the ‘Year of the Environment’. This is a cross agency programme led by the Liverpool City Region’s Local Nature Partnership, Nature Connected along with the Combined Authority, the city region’s six local authorities, the Environment Agency and Natural England.

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