Wales

£15m invested to tackle rise in Wales children in care

Boy sitting against a brick wall with his head down Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The funding is part of a £30m package to strengthen integrated working in health and social care.

Funding has been announced to tackle a rise in children being taken away from their families and into care in Wales.

The £15m Welsh Government cash injection will be split between Wales' 22 councils for early intervention and preventative services.

It follows a warning from council leaders about the "immense and ongoing pressures" on children's services.

Figures show there were 5,954 children in care in Wales in March 2017 - an increase of 5% on the previous year.

Huw Irranca-Davies, minister for children, older people and social care, said the money would be used to help families to stay together and to support children already in care.

It is part of a £30m package to strengthen integrated working in health and social care.

Mr Irranca-Davies said £9m spent last year helped more than 3,600 children remain with their families, and more than 1,900 children who had been in care received money to support the transition to adulthood.

In September 2018, the Association of Directors of Social Services Cymru and the Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA) said children's services were at breaking point and needed urgent investment.

At that time, Huw David from the WLGA said: "Whilst local government has and always provides as much resource and protection as possible to deliver vital services to safeguard and support children and their families, in the face of continuing cuts and increasing demand we will struggle to do so in the future."

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