Children and Families Newcastle launches

Children and Families Newcastle, a unique, collaborative reimagining of services in Newcastle will officially launch tomorrow (Wednesday 25thAugust).

Children and Families Newcastle will support young people to have the best start to their lives in the city, reach their potential and realise their dreams.

This ambitious new way of working will provide more community based, accessible and joined-up support and services for children, young people and their families.

The redesigned, fully-integrated approach will build on the strength of Newcastle’s partnerships and be part of the Collaborative Newcastle work, bringing the Council, NHS and voluntary and community sector together to provide services that support children and their families now and in the longer term.

Developments under the Children and Families Newcastle banner include –

  • The creation of vibrant Community Hubs across the city
  • A new team of Family Partners
  • Greater integration of services – bringing together the partners under the Collaborative Newcastle banner to shape services and combine resources effectively

The new Community Hubs will be spread across the city, with venues including The Haven @ Mountfield Primary School, Gosforth Library, The Fawdon Centre, Byker Sands, Carnegie Building (Benwell), Cowgate Centre and the Galafield Centre.

There are some smaller satellite locations across the city and more Hubs currently in development, with further locations being added to the Outer West of the city initially.

The vibrant hubs will provide friendly, safe spaces and services for all families. The Hubs span NHS, Local Authority and voluntary and community sector services, link in with schools, primary care and neighbourhood policing and be firmly rooted in local communities. They will also provide space for health services and community groups, embedded in the communities they support, alongside activities and opportunities for young people and families.

By having a range of services in one location families will be able to access help and support in a more holistic way,

The new team of Family Partners will create over 30 new roles across Newcastle. This newly developed role will support children, young people and their families to explore what support is available to them, navigate the services on offer and empowering them to make positive changes to their lives. Family Partners will work closely with families, creating strong, lasting and trusting relationships and bonds.

The whole programme of transformation is supported by 18 million investment, which is made up of contributions from partners from across the city.

Judith Hay, Newcastle City Council’s Director of Children, Education and Skills said,

“Newcastle is a child friendly city, all organisations in the city share this vision and the new Children and Families Newcastle service will allow us to give every child the best start in life.

“This new, innovative way of providing services will create opportunities for young people to learn and develop, socialise with peers, embrace culture and events and be part of their communities.

“The pandemic has impacted every corner of our city and especially our young people. They have lost valuable hours in school and had their learning impacted, missed out on valuable opportunities to interact with friends and opportunities that help shape their personalities and ambitions.

“We know how important it is that we support our families, in Newcastle 31.8% of pupils are eligible for Free School Meals, higher than the national average.

“The Children and Families Newcastle once again shows the strength of our cities partnerships and is a clear indication that our city will continue to work together – as it has done in the last 18 months – as we recover from the pandemic.”

Dame Jackie Daniel, Chief Executive of Newcastle-upon-Tyne Hospitals Trust said,

“Nothing is more important than making sure that our children and young people get the best start in life, so I’m grateful to all of the families who have worked with us over the last few months to help us design a new way of working together.

“It’s great to be part of launch at the Galafields community hub and to see the new facilities with a café, soft play and soon there will be computers as well that families can use, as well as new services to support and encourage families to be healthy from the start.”

Children and Families Newcastle will officially launch with a family fun day at the Gala Field

Community Hub. Activities and events for young people will be offered through Newcastle’s ‘Best Summer Ever’ and voluntary and community sector organisations will be showcasing their services.

Collaborative Newcastle is an innovative partnership that includes Newcastle City Council, Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Newcastle Gateshead CCG,Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust, Newcastle University and Northumbria University – working closely with GP services and Newcastle’s voluntary and community sector.

Collaborative Newcastle’s vision is to work collectively and creatively to improve the health, wealth and wellbeing of everyone in the City. Through radical new ways of joint working, Collaborative Newcastle is seeking to reduce inequality and provide better opportunities for all – children, families, adults and the elderly alike.

In December 2020 Collaborative Newcastle’s health and care partners signed a ground-breaking legal agreement, amongst the first of its kind in this country, to help shape the integrated work of the organisations in the city.

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