Pioneering places: Blackpool & EIF
From 2013, EIF worked with a network of 20 Pioneering Places, which provided an opportunity to learn and test how EIF might make the biggest difference to the business of delivering early intervention on the ground in local areas around England.
Blackpool is an area facing considerable challenges. It is the sixth most deprived local authority in England with some of the lowest levels of life expectancy and highest rates of children in care.
The risk of Domestic Violence & Abuse (DV&A) to women in Blackpool is estimated to be nearly four times the national average. Blackpool has a strong appetite to develop innovative approaches to find new solutions to entrenched and complex problems.
Blackpool works through ‘Getting it Right for Every Blackpool Child and Family’ framework, which aims to better identify risk and target resources early. Early intervention in Blackpool has also received a significant boost, through the success of their Big Lottery ‘Better Start’ proposals focusing on improvements to services for 0-5s.
EIF support & advice
- EIF’s review on domestic violence and abuse highlighted the significant harm to children of witnessing domestic violence, even if they are not directly being abused. This evidence was used by Blackpool to help get agreement to develop a new early intervention approach to domestic violence and abuse which became known as the ‘Step Up’ project.
- EIF supported Blackpool and University of Central Lancashire (UCLAN) to submit a bid to the Economic & Social Research Council (ESRC) to evaluate the ‘Step Up’ project.
- The Blackpool and UCLAN ESRC bid was successful in getting almost £185k of funding from ESRC to evaluate the approach.
- EIF also supported Blackpool to use the Early Intervention Maturity Matrix to inform a new strategy and action plan for early intervention.
“EIF encouraged and advised us on the National and Regional priorities in relation to domestic abuse. They helped us to understand what the research would be expected to demonstrate and the high expectations involved which enabled us to focus the bid and articulate the vision. We need to demonstrate outcomes in early intervention locally and the support to get the work funded by the ESRC and off the ground was a superb opportunity to do this.”
Moya Foster, Senior Service Manager Early Help, Blackpool