Our aim for the next decade is to extend our successful Full Families programme from North East Lincolnshire across the Humber in Hull, Scunthorpe and Goole. We want to support more families to change their lives both as individual family members and together. This way we effect true and lasting change, breaking down barriers that have been built over generations.
How Full Families began:
For more than a decade now, we have built a reputation for delivering transparent, successful and unique programmes of self-discovery – supporting individuals to make the changes required for them to transform their lives.
The ‘missing piece’ of the jigsaw had been our ability to work with the wider families of individuals – not because we couldn’t, but because we did not have the resource.
This led to a partnership with CPO, (Creating Positive Opportunity) in North East Lincolnshire and a successful joint bid was presented to the Big Lottery Reaching Communities Fund. Our inaugural three-year Full Families Programme began in the East Marsh area of Grimsby, which is amongst the most deprived local authority wards in England.
Success of Grimsby Full Families:
We are currently working with approx. 75 families – due to their specific challenges some have disengaged from any local authority and government-offered support. We continue to support them to re-engage, to question their values and to help them to overcome significant and generational barriers, enabling positive change.
Our work in Grimsby is achieving our desired outcomes, with two independent reports citing the following:
- 90 per cent of all the families invited to work with us have engaged;
- Family breakdown has been prevented;
- Improved school attendance is evidenced;
- Employment has been taken-up;
- Family members have re-engaged with the relevant support agencies;
- In the 2020 Full Families assessment report conducted by eminent social worker Lesley Wilkinson MBE, the Grimsby programme is described as ‘a benchmark for good practice’.
Why is Full Families needed?
When you examine the statistics that exist across the Humber region, the need for an extension of this successful work within ‘full families’ is evident:
- There are more than 150,000 children living in workless households;
- Evidence suggests that such children are more likely to fall out of education at all stages, leaving school with no education or being excluded;
- As a result, they are more likely to suffer mental health issues, or be pulled into alcohol and/or substance abuse.
Despite years of investment by local authorities and national government, initiatives designed to help some of the most marginalised families within our communities, have not seen significant changes to deprivation indicators. Issues including school exclusion, crime, anti-social behaviour, family breakdown, looked-after children, poor mental and physical health, and a lack of meaningful engagement with statutory services, have not been addressed in a way that treats the underlying symptoms of such problems and challenges.
What are CatZero’s next steps?
We want to use our ‘blueprint’ Grimsby Full Families programme in Hull, Scunthorpe and Goole. To do so we will use our experience of working with, supporting, and learning from families and individuals in similar communities across the Humber. Funding is also being sought, again with CPO, to continue our Grimsby programme.
Scunthorpe Full Families Programme aims to support 66 participating families and 264 individual family members through a programme of activity, which gets to the heart of the issues that have brought them to crisis point. It will deal with all age groups, multiple and complex needs and, through a family-led process, will lead to positive change. By getting to know each, the families will create their own network and bond the community together.
A similar Full Families Programme is already underway in the Preston Road area of Hull, with support from the Community Led Local Development Fund and the Big Lottery Reaching Communities fund.