Dunfermline Press

‘Wrap-around support’ measures in place to help Fife households

- By Chloe Goodall Reporter Chloe.Goodall@newsquest.co.uk

A RANGE of initiative­s has been developed to offer “wrap-around support” for those in need in South and West Fife.

In an annual progress report presented to the Area Committee, the numerous collaborat­ive approaches and wrap-around support that is now available were highlighte­d.

Cllr David Barratt, convener of the Area Committee, said: “It’s crucial that the wrap-around support that’s been developed continues to be offered to those in need.

“It means they can more easily access dignified, co-ordinated help when they most need it.

“I’m pleased to see that, this winter, access to food, learning and other activities will be offered to local communitie­s with a particular focus on widening the programme of activities across the community hubs in a stigma-free environmen­t.

“And, longer-term I look forward to seeing how projects that Fife Council has provided funding towards, including the new Dalgety Bay Community Hub and increasing the number of Credit Union members in partnershi­p with the Kingdom Community Bank, progress towards their aims.”

Four main Community Assistance Hubs have been developed at Parkgate Community Centre, Inverkeith­ing Civic Centre, Oakley Community Centre and High Valleyfiel­d Community Centre.

Staff from the council and other partners have a presence in the centres on weekdays to offer advice and support.

More practical resources are available for people looking for help to mitigate food and fuel costs including free air fryers and slow cookers.

Additional trained welfare Support Assistants are working in the local area to carry out benefit calculatio­n checks with people and to help them maximise their household income.

And around 35 community volunteers have also been recruited and trained as Energy Champions.

They have knowledge on energy consumptio­n issues, energy efficiency measures and where to signpost to people for the type of support they need.

Employabil­ity programmes have been delivered for local people too, with the Next Steps programme providing youth employabil­ity support for 17- to 24-year-olds; and 20 local residents enrolled to the Rural Skills Scotland Grounds for Growth course.

Local communitie­s benefitted from the programme too with the group carrying out a number of local clean-ups and woodland thinning type works.

They helped to clear space for a community garden in Limekilns and to revitalise a strip of woodland used by local school children in Cairneyhil­l.

Support for people in crisis or emergency situations continues to come in the form of supermarke­t vouchers.

Referrals have increased since the Community Assistance Hubs were set up, partly thanks to more multiagenc­y staff being based under one roof at the same time.

The Community Assistance Hubs will continue to act as “anchor points” for support in communitie­s, referring on to the most appropriat­e partner.

For more on how to access support during the cost of living crisis, visit https://our.fife.scot/gethelp.

 ?? ?? Community Assistance Hub, Parkgate Community Centre.
Community Assistance Hub, Parkgate Community Centre.

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