A consultation to redesign Children’s Centre Services has gone live, which aims to ensure every child thrives in Cambridgeshire.
Families can read more about the consultation here and share their views.
The wide ranging plans, from Cambridgeshire County Council, propose to create ‘family friendly’ services in the heart of communities. It builds on the current offer, offering support to families of all ages, from expectant parents to young adults. The proposals look to deliver the same level of services in a more local way, so those families can access them easily.
The new children centre services will be more flexible and tailored for each community delivered in places they know or already use, and in doing so, the Council will make savings of £1 million.
The proposals will also see Children’s Centres work more closely with parents and health professionals to provide a set of integrated services that seamlessly support communities. This service could include health visitors, midwifery and speech therapists. The new approach includes:
- 10 Child and Family Centres, delivered across 15 buildings, that will continue to offer services in places of high need with extended opening hours, with skilled staff able to meet families needs
- 12 Child and Family Zones - these willuse community spaces, such as libraries and community centres, to deliver a range of services, including baby and toddler groups, activities for families with disabilities and places for community groups to meet. A video of a Child and Family zone can be seen here
- Outreach Programme – The Child and Family Centres workforce will deliver support across a range of community venues so families, particularly in rural locations, can access a regular programme of services and responsive support.
- Online Offer – there will be a comprehensive online offer to provide information and advice to help and support families
Cambridgeshire County Councillor Simon Bywater, Chairman of the Children and Young People Committee, said: “The welfare of families across Cambridgeshire is our top priority. They have told us that Children Centre Services are not always in places where they are needed most. We want to change this to ensure we have the right services, support and opportunities available for families if and when they need us.
“This is the right time to be setting out our proposals as we need to make sure that these key services are able to meet the challenges of the future. However, we cannot shape these services without your views. Local people are the experts on their communities and know what is needed where they live. Whatever your views, we would welcome your feedback by inviting you to take part in our consultation.”
The consultation ends on 22 September 2017. Hard copy versions of the consultation can be found at Children Centres and Libraries. Frontline staff will also be at a range of events across the summer. Details of these events can be found on the consultation.
Website content can be translated for speakers of other language using the inbuilt google translate function. We can provide versions of the consultation in other languages and braille on request. Please contact [email protected].
Decisions relating to the final proposals for Children’s Centre Services will be taken by the Children and Young People Committee meets in the autumn.