Council u-turn saves Volunteers in Child Protection scheme

A London council has reversed its decision to scrap its Volunteers in Child Protection scheme after pressure from the public. (Picture: Rex Features, model released)

Bromley Council has reversed its decision to scrap its Volunteers in Child Protection scheme.

The council said pressure from the public led it to save the high profile, Big Society-style programme under which volunteers work in child protection.

“We listened to feedback from people in Bromley about the budget proposals and this has helped inform what has been an exceptionally difficult budget to set,” a council spokesperson told Community Care.

“We are pleased to say that there will be no cut to the Volunteers in Child Protection funding and that the council has earmarked extra funding to support the voluntary sector.”

Bromley has had to cut a total of £36m over the next two years following reductions in government funding and an increased demand in services, the spokesman said.

The Volunteers in Child Protection scheme costs £38,000 per year. The programme, run by the charity Community Service Volunteers (CSV), matches volunteers with families and children on protection plans to give practical advice and support.

Originally a three-year pilot in two local authorities in 2004, the ViCP scheme now runs in the London boroughs of Bromley, Lewisham and Islington, and in Southend-on-Sea.

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