A West Sussex County Council scheme designed to help vulnerable families change their lives for the better is now more than half way towards its target.
The Think Family programme is the local version of the Government’s Troubled Families programme which aims to turn around the lives of ‘hard to help’ families.
The County Council released new figures this week showing how many families are being helped and how many have met the government’s set criteria for being ‘turned around’.
- 1,197 families have been identified as being eligible for the programme.
- 639 families have so far been turned around.
- Think Family has a target of turning around the lives of 1,165 families by the end of March 2015.
Figures compiled in February and issued this week by the Department for Communities and Local Government show 436 families have been ‘turned around’ in West Sussex. That figure has now risen to 639, which is 55 per cent of the full target of 1,165.
Peter Evans, West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member for Children – Start of Life, said: “Once a family’s circumstances are verified, they will be referred to one of our Key Workers who will work intensively with them for 6-18 months, depending on need, to help improve life in the family.
“This could cover a range of issues, from getting children back into school, issues around crime and anti-social behaviour, or helping adults make progress into employment. Nurturing the family’s parenting skills and ensuring that children can develop safely and happily will always be paramount.
“Transforming the lives of 639 families is a splendid achievement in itself, but we should not forget the wider benefits of this programme. Children back at school, parents returning to work and harmonious homes are good for the economy and for society as a whole. It means that scarce public sector resources can be targeted more efficiently.”
Think Family covers the whole of West Sussex and is being delivered jointly in Worthing with Worthing Borough Council and other local and commissioned services.