WY-FI Project

West Yorkshire – Finding Independence | Supporting people with multiple needs

Multi-agency, person-centred support needs to be available earlier on in a person’s journey – a new report from WY-FI

‘Closing the Revolving Door’ is a new report from West Yorkshire Finding Independence. The report focuses on young people and parents experiencing multiple disadvantage.

The report goes onto say that flexible, community based, preventative services must be able to respond to the needs of young people experiencing multiple disadvantage as a result of adverse childhood experiences.

Services must also be able to respond to the needs of young people who are at risk of experiencing multiple disadvantage, because of social inequalities and socially produced adverse childhood experiences.

Services need to understand the concept of home for young people, including how home contributes to overall feelings of security, as well as providing a base for the development of education and social skills. Sports, arts and cultural activities are successful ways of engaging with young people in receipt of navigator support.

Mark Burns-Williamson, the Office of Police and Crime Commissioner in West Yorkshire says, “As with all the WF-FI research papers, this one around the experience of children and young people is hard hitting but sensitively written. Using evidence gathered over a number of years from children, and from adult service users about their childhood experience, it emphasises how easy it is to fail our young people and reminds us of the potential consequences of these failings.

“I am glad to see that the recommendations include providing better transitional support; no one “grows up” overnight, least of all a young person who has suffered trauma or has lacked meaningful family support. In addition, there is a call for young people – as with adults– to be assessed not simply on the risk they present to others, but also on their own risks, i.e. their vulnerability.

Mark Burns-Williamson, West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner

“Finally, I am pleased to see continued evidence of developing a bespoke approach as a golden thread. Services should be allowed to fall away when the client feels they are no longer needed, not the client being left to fall away from the service.”

Between June 2014 and May 2020, WY-FI supported 823 individual beneficiaries across the five local authority districts in West Yorkshire. We collected consistent data for all beneficiaries during their Navigator support journey, covering demographics, needs, activities, assessments and outcomes.

For this report, we divided WY-FI beneficiaries into three groups, we can see the different influences, impacts and outcomes of beneficiary journeys. We will refer to these three groups as:

• 18-25 year-olds (72 people), 20 people in this group are also parents, for the purposes of statistics we have kept these 20 in the 18-25 year olds group, although their experiences are reflected as both parents and 18-25 year olds in the deep dive into case notes
• Parents – these are defined as beneficiaries who claimed Child Tax Credits (238 people)
• Mainstream – all other mainstream beneficiaries (532 people).

The report also includes peer research, with young people invited to work with Life Experience, a local social enterprise project, to come up with creative way of expressing their lived experience.

‘Closing the Revolving Door’ is the third in a series of reports that WY-FI s producing for the National Lottery Community Fund Fulfilling Lives Programme and the West Yorkshire Office of Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC).

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