Swansea Local Service Board – Making a Difference for Children and Young People?

Last Monday the Partnership Overview and Scrutiny Committee had a presentation on the Prevention and Early Intervention Programme which is one of Swansea Local Service Board’s four projects.

The presentation was the second step in the Committee’s ongoing evaluation of whether Swansea Local Service Board is making a difference.  I have blogged before on the Committee’s first look at this topic.

The programme starts from the understanding that:

…the health, well-being & future prospects of young people living in poverty are significantly reduced compared to young people not living in poverty. Social disadvantage & poverty are known to be significant factors leading to the number of young people being poor attendees in schools, not in education, employment or training at 16 (NEET), offending and being unemployed in later life.   As with other issues affecting young people, evidence shows that early intervention can be more effective than dealing with problems when they surface.

Here is the presentation which was given by Richard Parry, Corporate Director (Education).

[iframe http://www.slideshare.net/slideshow/embed_code/8479465 425 355]
During the presentation a DVD of the ‘So To Do’ project in Hafod Primary School was shown.  This illustrated how the project actually made a difference on the ground.

The Committee raised a number of issues after the presentation including:

  • Case studies – over what period have they happenend and is the work expensive?
  • From governor experience – can the lack of communication between Social Services and Education be improved?
  • Agencies are working together but should it have been done much earlier?
  • Effect of park keepers on safety in parks
  • A small number of children feature in the DVD – there must be many more children who haven’t had these opportunities.
  • As a result of these activities anti social behaviour has dropped
  • Level of buy in from the parents of the children involved
  • Great thing to do – early intervention is key
  • Communication with ward councillors is also important

Whilst the Local Service Board has brought in direct funding for many of the Prevention and Early Intervention projects the jury is perhaps still out on whether it has made a difference in other ways.

At their next meeting the Committee will be looking at the Economic Inactivity Project.

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