Action for Children is seeking to bolster the case for increased investment in early intervention services for children ‘>the launch of a major new research project.
The charity and think-tank the New Economics Foundation will examine the benefits of prevention and early intervention services in a seven-month project that will culminate in a manifesto for change in autumn 2009.
According to the NEF the increase in the UK’s overall wealth – as measured by GDP – over recent years has failed to improve children’s well-being.
Bottom of Unicef league
Last year, Action for Children also highlighted the fact that, despite a succession of governments implementing more than 400 initiatives for children and young people over the past 21 years, the UK came last in a 2007 Unicef league table on child well-being.
The project team will be conducting a series of citizens’ juries consisting of children and young people, families, researchers, policy makers and practitioners in order to build a case for supporting early intervention services.
Researchers will also attempt to estimate the economic and social benefits of a range of children’s services in order to demonstrate the effectiveness of preventive approaches.
Making the case
Action for Children chief executive Clare Tickell said: “We witness the benefits of early intervention on a daily basis, and this work will firmly make the case for investment in it.
“It’s critical that our knowledge of this translates into policy to deliver real change that will benefit society at large.”