Leaders welcome our new initiative in Greater Manchester
On Friday, more than 40 local leaders joined us at the People's History Museum in Manchester for the launch of our new approach to working in the area. Speakers - including Lord Peter Smith and Baroness Beverly Hughes, above - spoke of our undertaking's importance.
Known as The Children’s Society in Greater Manchester, our new approach combines our influence as a national charity with local delivery of services and knowledge of need (we've worked in the area since 1891) to support local communities to thrive.
Greater Manchester is a dynamic place but children and young people in the area face significant challenges. More than 150,000 children live in poverty in Greater Manchester, which is nearly equal to the entire population of Bury. Our recent research shows that in the North West over a third of children worry about how much there is to go around in their family and 41% of children said they do not have enough space at home.
Ensuring children get a decent start in life
We know that tackling child poverty and teenage neglect will be challenging. Our first task is ensuring that people know the problems in our communities face in Greater Manchester - making sure they know about the levels of poverty existing on their own doorstep. In our recent survey of people living in Greater Manchester, over 90% of people underestimated the level of poverty in the area. Over half believed that there are less than 50,000 children living in poverty, less than a third of the true tally.
We want Greater Manchester to be a place where poverty is no longer a barrier to children getting a decent start in life and where children no longer face unacceptable risks in their lives without support.
Building on our existing services working with over 3500 children and families a year we want to join forces with partners to combat child poverty and teenage neglect. There are exciting plans ahead, from the development of new services to help the most vulnerable in Rochdale to the potential of up to £50m Big Lottery funding to support services in the first three years of a child’s life.
By 2016 we aim to:
- Double the number of children’s services we deliver across Greater Manchester
- Reach over 10,000 children and families
- Double the percentage of supporters engaged in multiple ways from 17% to 34%
- Ensure more young people become actively involved with The Children’s Society as supporters or volunteers
How can you get involved?
We want supporters, partners and volunteers to get behind The Children’s Society as we work to achieve our vision of all children thriving in Greater Manchester.