Supported by Barclays, Gamechangers helps excluded families who are struggling to cope. Many of them are already known to many statutory agencies but not working properly with them due to their high levels of need.
This is where Gamechangers comes in. Our caseworkers offer patient, persistent support to help the families engage with the services on offer and work with them more effectively. Many of the families helped through Gamechangers are bewildered by statutory services as they are already struggling to cope and experiencing extreme disadvantage. Our support includes:
- Helping with housing, looking for work or training,
- Managing debts and resolving financial difficulties
- Accessing services helping with substance misuse and domestic abuse
- Help around family mediation
- Help with discussions with schools
- Help for families involved in the criminal justice system engage with police, probation and youth offending services.
By offering such intensive support we are able to help the family move forward to tackle their underlying problems and thus minimise the impact of these on the children.
Gamechangers is available in Leeds, London and Cardiff.
COPE (Children of Prisoners Empowered) is a Leeds-based service offering support to children of prisoners. Our caseworkers offer practical support to ensure basic needs such as decent housing are met and that the children are in a safe and settled home environment in which they can thrive and achieve their full potential. They are also supported with schooling and to engage in after school activities. Funded by Children in Need, this service was developed in response to feedback gained from children and young people from families in our existing work in Yorkshire. The team work in close partnership with statutory and other voluntary agencies in providing this work.
Mentoring support provides children and young people a positive role model to whom they can aspire. There are also opportunities for mentors to volunteer on this project and have the opportunity to gain a Level 3 qualification
We are helping prisoners in HMP Wealstun and their families through MTF (Maintaining Family Ties) which is offered through our partnership with Purple Futures. It aims to help strengthen families and increase their positive networks through offering our children and families support services (see above) within the prison.
It helps people:
- Have an established positive support network (family or peers) upon release, supports with parenting skills,
- Provides the opportunity to complete short aimed at Personal, Social, Health and Economic improvement
- Improves community integration and engagement with services such as social services or troubled families
To be eligible, people must be serving at HMP Wealstun and returning to West Yorkshire and have a willingness to build on family relationships and social skills.
Work with Family Gangs Units
We work in close partnership with the London Borough of Lambeth and the Royal Borough of Greenwich to provide holistic support to families in these boroughs who are affected by the current or previous gang involvement of one family member. This can cause trauma and disruption to the whole family. The nature of our work involves offering help around issues such as housing, liaising with the authorities and supporting the children and young people in the family to stay engaged with education and employment.