Ospreys skipper Alun Wyn Jones and team-mate Gareth Owen have helped launch a range of new and innovative services which will operate from the NSPCC Service Centre in Swansea.
The services will offer cutting edge child protection programmes to some of the most vulnerable children and families in South West Wales.
The duo joined Julie James, Constituency Assembly Member for Swansea West, and young people from the NSPCC Cymru/Wales participation group to create a ‘Helping Hands’ canvas to commemorate the day.
The centre is one of forty across the UK which will deliver a range of support for children and families and has been developed using existing premises in the heart of the city. The centre will deliver innovative services that work with children, young people and families to prevent sexual abuse and neglect. Services will also focus on working with children in care, as well as protecting babies by working with vulnerable groups of parents to help them make the transition in to parenthood.
Swansea has some of the most deprived areas in Wales* and in 2011, 255 children in the city were subject to a child protection plan.
Service centre manager, Karen Burrows said:
“The NSPCC has operated services in Swansea for many years and we’re very pleased to be able to continue that commitment. The organisation makes a huge difference to the lives of children across the UK and the centre will help us to expand our work and pioneer new approaches to address the child protection problems facing local children.
“These services will help to protect vulnerable local children from harm and crucially also work to prevent abuse where children are at risk. We are very much looking forward to working closely with our colleagues in organisations across the city to deliver services that will help create a safer future for our children.”
New services provided at the centre include:
- Connecting with Children in Care- which provides support to all children and young people in care who need help to deal with a problem.
- Pregnancy, birth and beyond- an antenatal education programme run in partnership with health professionals for parents who are vulnerable and at risk. It helps parents get off to the best start, supporting them to give good care to their babies and successfully make the transition to parenthood.
- Evidence-based decisions for children in complex neglect cases- a pioneering new approach which the NSPCC will test with local authorities to help social workers make effective decisions in child neglect cases.
- Letting the future in- which provides therapeutic services to help children move on with their lives after sexual abuse
The NSPCC relies on the generosity of members of the public and business supporters for the majority of its income, without which it could not operate vital services like those at the Swansea Service Centre.
To make a £4 donation to the NSPCC in your area text WALES or CYMRU to 70744.Messages cost £4 plus one standard message, and you must have the bill payer’s permission. NSPCC receives approximately £3.99 per message depending on your network.
* Swansea ranks 5th for the highest proportion of deprived areas in Wales, with 14% of its local areas ranked in the top 10% of deprived areas in Wales
Source: The Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation Child Index 2011