Families turned around
We aim to increase the number of families we help to change, improve and turn their lives around. This measure reports on our ability to deliver against the national Troubled Families programme to 2020 which relates to ‘turning around’ families against a national vulnerability criteria such as low school attendance; parents and children involved in crime and anti-social behaviour; domestic violence and abuse; young people at risk of worklessness.
Such families often have very long-standing issues, and represent a high cost to a range of public services. Intervention is through an intensive keyworker service, or alternatively through a range of partners offering early help interventions. It will often take around 12 months before ‘success’ can be reported: the intention is to provide significant outcomes which a family can sustain into the future.
There is an accompanying methodology which measures how far the family has travelled towards sustainability, to allow audit and evaluation of the results. Work with families is part-funded by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government and supported by the DWP (Department of Work and Pensions). A range of WSCC and commissioned private and third sector services jointly contribute to these outcomes, facilitated by the County Council. The Think Family Partnership includes District Councils, Sussex Police, Health, Housing, Schools, Children’s Social Care and a wide range of charities.
We aim to achieve 4,600 families turned around by March 2021.
September 2020 performance
A further 283 claims were submitted in September meaning that we have met 97% of our target. The remaining 23 cases will be claimed in November.
Actions that helped us meet our target included having a strong plan is in place, and the formation of the Integrated Prevention & Earliest Help service (IPEH) in Children & Family Services from April 2017 which made a significant contribution to this process, through integrating a range of professional disciplines, including our many partners, in a more effective way to support vulnerable families.
Behind these headline figures lie tangible and sustainable improvements in quality of life for vulnerable families across a range of factors, and these in turn have positive impacts across society. Preventative work of this kind also helps to reduce crisis-demand on other County Council services.