Undoubtedly the pandemic has had an effect on people’s mental health and none more so that vulnerable families and children.
So as the country marks National Children’s Mental Health Week – which runs until 7 February – BCP Council is set to provide £1.3 million of additional funding to provide vital support.
The Cabinet will discuss the proposal on 10 February, making recommendations for consideration at Full Council on 23 February.
Cllr Drew Mellor, BCP Council leader, said, “The mental health and wellbeing of our children and young people is a key priority for the council and I am proud that we are leading the way by taking an innovative approach to ensuring that vulnerable families are getting additional support when they most need it. It is even more important this year that we give our commitment and do all we can to ensure those families and children that have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic receive the help and support they need.
“We know that disadvantaged families and young people are really struggling with their mental health and being able to access the support they need during the pandemic is crucial and that is why we are proposing a further £1.3 million to boost the services that can provide dedicated help to our communities.”
The council is proposing an investment of £1 million for a Family Investment Fund aimed at helping the most disadvantaged children and young people to catch up after the devastating impact of the year-long pandemic. It will include one-off financial grants, increased digital access, childcare services, child and adolescent mental health services and specialist services to support children whose may have fallen further behind, for example, with speech and language delay.
An additional £300,000 over three years is proposed for mental health prevention services to ensure that those children whose needs fall short of statutory intervention can be met as early as possible so that the necessary help and support can be put in place. This includes a dedicated mental health practitioner within the council’s early help service.
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