Hartlepool Council seeks new agency to mentor Hartlepool youngsters

Hartlepool Civic Centre.
Hartlepool Civic Centre.
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COUNCILLORS will be asked to agree the search for a new agency to provide mentoring services for Hartlepool youngsters at risk not meeting their potential.

The current contract for the service is due to run out in March next year.

Hartlepool Borough Council’s Children’s Services committee will be asked to look for a new provider when it meets tomorrow.

The new two-year contract will be worth £124,000 to whoever provides it.

The child and young person mentoring service is one of a number of features of the council’s Early Intervention Strategy for town families whose children are at risk of being disadvantaged, falling behind their peers or not reaching their full potential.

The service recruits qualified mentors to support any youngster who is identified with a need that cannot be met by universal and targeted out of school services.

It also works to identify any further needs of the family, child or young person that falls outside of the mentoring service so that an integrated package of care can be implemented. A report by Gill Alexander, the council’s director of child and adult services, said: “The current service has been regularly monitored with a full service review recently being completed. It shows that the service is valued by professionals and children, young people and their families.

“It is also beginning to show positive outcomes for children and young people accessing the service.”

Changing Futures North East currently delivers the mentoring service but the contract is due to come to an end in March next year.

This contract has already been extended but there is no opportunity to extend it further.

The report added: “The current contract comes to an end in March 2015. A decision needs to be made to prevent a gap in services for children and young people. The service will be advertised for two years with an extension for a further two twelve months, based on demand, satisfactory performance and funding being available.”

The total value of the initial two year contract is proposed to be £62,000 per year rising to £248,000 for four years.

Funding for the new contract has been identified within the Department for Education’s Early Intervention Grant.