Family Focus Helps to Improve Lives in Suffolk


Suffolk is the first county in the UK to expand its use of E-CINS to help support families in need. Suffolk Family Focus, a three year project focused on supporting families most in need of long term, intensive support will be using E-CINS’ unique technology to enable partnerships and agencies to “talk” to each other and share vital information on their casework.
Starting with a pilot in Lowestoft, Suffolk Family Focus will be working to make real changes and improve the quality of life for 1150 families in Suffolk, helping them overcome issues such as truancy, crime, anti-social behaviour and unemployment.

“E-CINS enables practitioners to record and share information, in realtime, with all other agencies involved in a family’s case. Support workers are constantly kept up to date because it creates an environment where everyone knows what everyone else is doing. This vastly improves communication and outcomes for the people they are tasked to help. E-CINS is already providing time and efficiency savings for organisations in Suffolk and around the UK. It is reducing duplication of effort and resources and this will benefit family members who will not need to explain their circumstances over and over again to different agency workers” said Gary Pettengell.

Pettengell continued “It is estimated that the average unit cost of intensive interventions that are known to work with families falling into the Troubled Families category is around £10,000. The fact that E-CINS is non-commercial and offered at a very low cost means more money can be directed where it is needed most, at the family and not to software companies”.

Suffolk Family Focus is part of the Government’s Troubled Families Initiative which aims to turn around the lives of 120,000 families in England that cost the public sector an estimated £75,000 each per year. The initiative will see the public sector redesign the way it works to better meet the needs of these families, making a real difference to their lives and achieving long term savings.

Rachel Tucker, Coordinator of Waveney District Councils Anti-Social Behaviour Unit said “these families often have deep-seated issues and we will work together with the families to put together a bespoke programme of support to tackle the problem in a way that delivers real change and positive outcomes for them. Our intention is to work with them to improve all aspects of their lives and this can only be achieved if we can involve an amalgam of key support workers and a network of professionals all tasked with the same objective. We have been working with Empowering-Communities for over a year now and using E-CINS is enabling support to be wrapped around victims and vulnerable persons very quickly.”

John Sanderson of Suffolk Family Focus said “The needs of some families are complex. Our aim is to focus on intensive ‘family centred’ interventions with high level involvement from a wide range of local partners from the Police, District and Borough Councils, the Voluntary & Community Sector and Probation to Health. Education and Housing Associations. The process of co-ordinating the information-flow and communication between these partners is now a much easier task via E-CINS and we feel we now have a real opportunity to help break the cycle of intergenerational crime, unemployment and low aspirations to deliver sustainable improvements in outcomes for these families and their children”.

For more information click here or visit: http://www.empowering-communities.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/ECINS-generic-document.pdf

or contact Rachel Tucker (01502 523111) rachel.tucker@waveney.gov.uk and John Sanderson, john.sanderson@suffolk.gov.uk

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