Future of Barnardo’s Flintshire service under threat amid funding concerns

A FLINTSHIRE service which helps families affected by substance misuse could be under threat, unless more funding can be secured.

National Assembly for Wales funding for the Barnardo’s Families Matter project, based in Buckley, is due to run out next month and additional funds have not yet been secured.

In 2008/09 the pilot scheme helped more than 45 families in the county and has been used as a national model because of its success.

It uses interventions including motivational interviewing, cognitive behavioural therapy, systemic family therapy, couples work, service user peer support groups, and parenting programmes.

North Wales AM Mark Isherwood raised the matter during the Business Statement in the Assembly.

He said: “The draft external evaluation report for the Welsh Government, I understand, has identified the Barnardo’s Flintshire Families Matter service as the most effective model of five pilot schemes, yet I understand that the four staff working on this are currently facing redundancy because of uncertainty over funding.”

A spokesman for Barnardo’s Cymru said: “The Flintshire Families Matter service is funded until the end of March and the charity is currently involved in active negotiations with the local authority and other partners to secure funding for the next phase of the service, which works with families affected by parental substance misuse.

“Barnardo’s is committed to continuing this work in Flintshire and hopes for a positive outcome to its negotiations.”

In 2008/09 six children from three families were removed from the ChildProtection Register and had their cases closed by Flintshire social services after working with Families Matter, and intervention from the service prevented social services involvement with 10 children from five families.