Green light for plans to expand frontline youth service work across Wandsworth

Published: Thursday, June 27, 2019

Councillors have approved plans to expand youth service provision across the borough, employ more frontline youth workers and establish a new pot of money that can be used to fund a range of community initiatives that support young people in Wandsworth

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Councillors on the education and children’s services committee have backed proposals to employ the equivalent of an additional 12.5 full time (fte) workers to support young people across the borough.

At the same time a new £190,000 “good ideas” fund is being set up which the community can use to finance proposals and initiatives that benefit young people and support their development.

The borough’s existing youth work teams and children’s centre staff will be organised into three new geographical clusters so they can be directed to where demand for their services is needed most. It also means that staff will be able to give extra attention to the wider needs of the families they work with.

And two of the borough’s busiest and most popular youth clubs – Devas and Caius House in Battersea - will both see their core grant increased. Devas will receive a 25 per cent uplift while Caius House will see their council grant increase five-fold.

Cabinet member for education and children’s services Cllr Will Sweet said: “This package of improvements will see an increase in the number of frontline youth workers employed in Wandsworth by the equivalent of more than a dozen full time posts.

“This means more members of staff than there are now - and this extra capacity will mean we can do more integrated and better co-ordinated work with more infants, young children, teenagers and their families.

“It also includes more services in children’s centres, while our new borough wide programme which has been co-produced with parents will deliver a minimum of 300 extra sessions per year.

“At the same time we are setting up a brand new substantial community fund that local groups with good ideas for supporting young people will be able to draw upon to bring their ideas to life.

“This is a real boost to youth services across Wandsworth. Our local independent youth clubs provide fantastic services and as a council we are passionate about continuing to support them.”