Friday, 20 March 2015

A Stitch In Time

I support the "a stitch in time" campaign so no child has to reach crisis point before they are offered help. 

Regards Adrian Windisch

Dear Mr Windisch,

I’m writing to ask you to support ‘A Stitch in Time’ – the campaign from Action for Children, Barnardo’s, The Children’s Society, and the NSPCC calling for the next Government to prioritise early support so that no child has to reach crisis point before they are offered help.

Most problems that families and children face do not occur overnight, but emerge gradually – yet if they’re not dealt with they can end up costing our public services billions of pounds each year:

• An unemployed young man with no qualifications is likely to have skipped school when he was a child.
• A mother neglecting her home and children may have developed depression after setbacks such as a difficult pregnancy, redundancy, or a relationship breakdown.
• A young woman left homeless after leaving care has had no family to teach her basic life skills, such as budgeting to afford rent.

The experience of these charities, who support children, teenagers and families day in day out, shows problems could have been prevented, with much less effort and expenditure, at an earlier stage in the person’s life. Watch this video to understand more.

I'd like to see a change in approach. Responsible government must invest in support and services that prevent problems before they start, to improve the lives of children and families and save money for taxpayers in the long run.

If elected, please use your position in Parliament to call for: 
1. Five year spending plans to give more stability for children and family services - Making five year funding commitments from one election to the next would allow the Government, local councils, and other service providers to make longer-term plans, and mean children could stick with the same support staff as they grow old.
2. Community budgets to help your local funding work harder Community Budgets allow providers of public services to pool their budgets.This reduces waste and makes it easier to work together to help children.
3. More accountability over spending on early support - The best way to ensure the Government prioritises early support is greater scrutiny. An annual progress report should be presented and scrutinised by Parliament.
4. A shift of public money towards early intervention - There is so much evidence that acting early avoids expensive crises that it only makes sense to invest a bigger slice of our public money in early support.

As one of your potential constituents, I hope you will prioritise early support for children if you are elected. If you would like to hear more about how early support can prevent children falling into crisis and the work of the four children's charities please email

I would also be keen to hear your views.
Thank you for your time,

Best wishes

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