£2.6 million Investment To Boost Early Interventions Programme In South East

The South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust is delighted to launch a new Early Intervention Transitions Support Programme funded through the Social Investment Fund by the Northern Ireland Executive Office of the First and Deputy First Minster. The Trust is the lead partner in this new programme which is worth approximately £2.6 million over two and half years.

The Early Intervention Transitions Support Programme will see three projects provide a range of activities across four localities in the Trust area, North Down & Ards, Colin, Greater Lisburn and Down, which are the areas of greatest need and identified as having significant levels of deprivation and social problems by NISRA/OFMDFM.

[caption id="attachment_60062" align="aligncenter" width="540"]  Brendan Whittle (Director of Children’s Services, South Eastern HSC Trust), Carál Ní Chuilín, MLA (Minister for Arts, Culture & Leisure), Emma Pengelly MLA (Junior Minister), Lynda Vladeanu (Health Development Manager, South Eastern HSC Trust) & Ralston Perera, (Service Improvement Manager, South Eastern HSC Trust) Ar the launch were Brendan Whittle (Director of Children’s Services, South Eastern HSC Trust), Carál Ní Chuilín, MLA (Minister for Arts, Culture & Leisure), Emma Pengelly MLA (Junior Minister), Lynda Vladeanu (Health Development Manager, South Eastern HSC Trust) & Ralston Perera, (Service Improvement Manager, South Eastern HSC Trust)[/caption]

The three projects, Incredible Years, Mentoring for Achievement and Partnership with Parents will deliver parenting courses, one to one working with parents and children and mentoring support for children. The Trust has appointed community based partnerships to help deliver the three projects in each of these areas which will be undertaken by a wide range of community, voluntary and not for profit organisations working together with local communities.

The three projects will aim to target the “transitions” stages of children and young people moving from nursery and pre-school into primary school and from primary into post primary settings. The aim is to focus on those children and young people who are at risk of not achieving their full educational potential.

Brendan Whittle, Director of Children’s Services & Executive Director of Social Work, South Eastern Health & Social Care Trust, said: “The Early Intervention Transition Support Programme is an example of how the Social Investment Fund is making a difference on the ground, through helping children living in some of our most disadvantaged communities to achieve their potential; and I am delighted that the Trust, along with a wide range of partners, has been able to contribute to its delivery in the SE area”.

The Social Investment Fund was set up to deliver social change. It aims to make life better for people living in targeted areas by reducing poverty, unemployment and physical deterioration. The fund has been allocated £80 million by the Northern Ireland Executive and will run till late 2017/18. The Social Investment Fund Programme has at its heart the desire to bring about positive changes to areas of deprivation, identified and prioritised by the community, voluntary and business sectors.

Ministers Speak At Early INtervention Launch

At the launch in Ballynahinch Baptist Church on Wednesday 18 November, Junior Minister Emma Pengelly and DCAL Minister Carál Ní Chuilín announced the major £2.6 million programme of investment in family support and early intervention in the South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust (SEHCT) area.

The funding is being provided by the Executive’s £80 million Social Investment Fund (SIF). Through three key programmes, the community-led initiative has been developed to provide targeted support for children, young people, and their families and carers.

[caption id="attachment_60060" align="aligncenter" width="540"]Pictured members from community, voluntary & statutory organisations with local Councillors who attended the event Pictured members from community, voluntary & statutory organisations with local Councillors who attended the event[/caption]

Speaking at the launch in Ballynahinch, Junior Minister Emma Pengelly said: “Early intervention is a key theme of the Social Investment Fund and I commend this fantastic initiative by the South Eastern Zone which will deliver a world class programme of innovative, educational interventions, bringing new hope for some of our most disadvantaged families.

“The Executive created the fund to give everyone in Northern Ireland an equal chance to be in employment, free from poverty, and live in areas free from deterioration and dereliction. Its key objectives include building pathways to employment and tackling systemic issues linked to deprivation which I am confident this project will contribute to. At the heart of SIF is the focus on working in partnership with communities and ensuring a joined up approach with statutory agencies. This project is a perfect example of that vision being realised.”

Representing the deputy First Minister, Minister Carál Ní Chuilín said: “Investment in the early years of life leads to massive economic, social and emotional benefits for children, their families and the wider community. This £2.6 million from our Social Investment Fund is targeted at proactive intervention, engaging early with children, young people and their families, providing support, encouragement and opportunities.

“When disadvantage and hardship are passed on from generation to generation, the divisions in society can become set in stone. We must ensure by the time our children walk up the school path for the first time their future isn’t already mapped out. This funding will help lay the foundation of a fairer, more inclusive society.

“I commend everyone involved in this Early Intervention Transitions Programme for their vision and commitment to the future of our children and young people in developing this initiative which is a collaborative effort between the local SIF group, the Trust, Barnardo’s, YMCA, Colin Neighbourhood Partnership, Resurgam Community Development Trust and many others.”

This initiative was developed by the South Eastern SIF Zone Steering Group. The three key programmes will aim to give young people and their parents the opportunity to build life skills, improve relationships, and build confidence and self esteem.

The programmes are:

Incredible Years – The Incredible Years suite of Programmes (IY) – are delivered in a collaborative way to enable parents to understand and apply social learning theory principles, using a range of methods including short video clips, role-play, and discussion and homework tasks.

Partnership with Parents (PwP) – is a home based individual parenting programme which is tailored to meet the specific needs of children and their families. The programme is aimed at parents with children between the ages of 0-18, but with a focus on pre-school. It is to support parents who require a bit of help with the relationship they have with their child, managing behaviour, supporting their child’s social development, establishing and maintaining routines and supporting their child’s education and physical behaviour.

Mentoring for Achievement Programme (MAP) – This programme works with young people within the school environment through a two year individual mentoring scheme. MAP aims to support students identified by school staff as being at risk of academic failure and early school leaving. The programme uses mentoring as a means of working collaboratively with the students on issues such as attendance, punctuality, school engagement and motivation, task adherence and home /school relationships. It is aimed at children transitioning between primary and secondary school.

The South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust is lead partner in the Early Intervention Transitions programme, in collaboration with, Barnardo’s, YMCA, Colin Neighbourhood Partnership and Resurgam Community Development Trust supported by other community and voluntary sector organisations.