Staffordshire County Council has been working closely with partners across Staffordshire to change the way in which they support children and families.
The social care, public health and education teams have been working hard to reduce the number of children who reach a point in their lives where they require the statutory intervention of a social worker or other specialist professional. They know that the outcomes for children and young people who receive this level of support are not as good as the general population.
Intensive specialist support is also expensive and if the County Council continues to provide this level of support to a growing number of applicants, their service would become unaffordable and unsustainable. The County Council now seek to prevent as many families as possible from reaching crisis point with a new transformation programme.
The aim of the Children's System Transformation is to increase family resilience and enable more children to stay safely within their families and their local community. The County Council has formally reorganised their workforce to be more effective, build strong local relationships and community based sources as well as offer support at an earlier stage to any 'at risk' family.
I feel this is a step in the right direction to stop child abuse, help the families who need it most and build trust in the social care system for anyone wishing to reach out before they reach crisis point.
If you are concerned about the safety of a child and need to make a referral for safeguarding support, please contact the First Response team on 0800 1313126.