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No Wrong Door for Norfolk’s young people as Council bids to be part of national programme

19 July 2019

Vulnerable young people in Norfolk could be set to benefit from a nationally recognised scheme that provides dedicated, intensive support to improve their life chances and keep them out of care.

Norfolk County Council is bidding for a share of £84m to roll out a Norfolk version of the “No Wrong Door” model – a programme developed in North Yorkshire that has significantly improved the lives of children in care and those at risk of going into care.

Norfolk County Council’s People and Communities Select Committee will meet on Friday, 19 July when members will hear about the proposal to develop the service for 12 to 25-year-olds in Norfolk.

The model ensures that young people have a dedicated key worker, who builds a strong relationship with them and pulls in the support from colleagues across agencies. A dedicated team that includes mental health, police and speech and language support looks at the young person’s strengths, what they need to succeed and how they can move towards permanency (either living with a family or in the community). There would also be residential hubs offering short term support to children and young people, to help prevent them coming into care.

In North Yorkshire it has contributed to a reduction in out of county placements, independent fostering placements and the numbers in care.

Cllr John Fisher, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services at Norfolk County Council, said: “In Norfolk we’re ambitious for every one of our children and we want them to have the very best chance to succeed.

“We’re already investing £15m to further strengthen our work with children, young people and their families. This includes creating more properties for our care leavers, recruiting more foster carers and investing in direct work with children and families so we really understand their needs.

“The No Wrong Door approach completely fits with our way of working and, if successful, this extra investment will further accelerate the work we’re already doing to transform children’s lives.”

Norfolk County Council is one of 35 authorities eligible to submit a bid to the Department for Education’s Strengthening Families and Protecting Children Programme. If successful, the council would be closely supported by a team from North Yorkshire.

The bid will be discussed  by Norfolk County Council’s People and Select Committee on Friday, 19 July.

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