- Posted by: Mike Hedges MS
- Category: Latest News
Welsh Government funding worth nearly £42 million a year to support Wales’ most vulnerable and disadvantaged families was announced by the Deputy Minister for Children and Social Services, Gwenda Thomas.
The funding for the Families First programme includes £3 million for projects with a focus on disability. Families First is delivered by local authorities in response to locally identified needs, with services and projects targeting families threatened or affected by poverty.
The best way of supporting children, particularly those living in poverty, is by working with the whole family. Evidence suggests early intervention and support can reduce the likelihood of families developing more complicated and costly needs. Families need different levels of support depending on their circumstances.
Complicated problems will need more intensive support. However, some families will need help to overcome smaller problems to avoid them becoming more serious. Supporting a family often involves many different teams and services. These services need to work well together so families are confident, nurturing, and resilient. This involves a “team around the family” approach that brings agencies and services together in a co-ordinated way, making it less complex for families to access the support they need.
The Welsh Government’s Families First programme aims to:
• Help working age people in low income families gain, and progress within employment;
• Encourage children, young people and families, in or at risk of poverty, to achieve their potential;
• Ensure children, young people and families are healthy and safe.
The Welsh Government has said that it will continue to focus on the early years through programmes like Flying Start and the Foundation Phase. Flying Start has received a significant increase in funding. The key difference is that Families First extends support to all age groups.