Hartlepool leads with new £1.2million hub to improve children’s lives

Hartlepool Civic Centre.

Hartlepool Civic Centre.

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Hartlepool is to take the lead with a new £1.2million multi-agency children’s service to improve youngster’s lives across the region.

Hartlepool Borough Council will deliver the North Tees Multi Agency Children’s Hub (Mach) which will act as a single point of contact for children’s safeguarding referrals and enquiries, for Hartlepool and Stockton councils.

Danielle Swainston, Hartlepool’s assistant director for children’s services, presented a report to the council’s Finance and Policy Committee outlining the project.

Partner agencies seeking to refer a child will have the chance to seek advice and guidance from workers within their own organisation.

A report stated: “The development of this Children’s Hub is an exciting opportunity to make the lives of children in Hartlepool and Stockton better.

“It will mean that decisions about children’s safety are effectively made with all partners thinking about the whole life of a child.

“This is a significantly innovative development with Hartlepool council delivering a statutory service on behalf of another council.”

The Children’s Hub will be based in Hartlepool Civic Centre and is due to launch on June 1. It will cost £1,288,000 with Hartlepool contributing £533,500, and £754,000 from Stockton council and other partners.

Councillor Chris Simmons, who is also chair of the council’s Children’s Services Committee, said: “I think this is a new and better way of working, particularly partnership working, which is going to be the way forward in the future, and will undoubtedly lead to better outcomes for the children we serve.”