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Smart investment in children's services: EIF responds to Action for Children 'Choose Childhood' report

Press release   •   Jul 08, 2019 16:40 BST

Embargo 00:01 Tuesday 9 July

Action for Children has published Choose Childhood, a report on the changing face of childhood and how to support children’s wellbeing and development. In response, Donna Molloy, director of policy & practice at the Early Intervention Foundation (EIF), says:

“We welcome this report from Action for Children, which makes a cogent argument for the kinds of policy changes required to support children and families to meet the challenges of today and the decade ahead. The report is right to call for increased investment – but just as important, to demand that this investment is coordinated within a national strategy, informed by evidence, and used to reduce the demand on expensive acute services in the long run.

“The emphasis placed on evidence-based commissioning and using investments to grow the UK evidence base is spot on. We know that many popular and widespread approaches to early intervention and early help have not been evaluated. This doesn’t mean that they aren’t effective, but it does mean we don’t know – and as a country we cannot afford to spend valuable resources on forms of support that haven’t been shown to improve outcomes for children and young people.

“The authors are right to highlight the importance of incentives within the system, as a way of encouraging smart, long-term decisions about services and commissioning. Decision-makers at the national and local level can be discouraged from making much-needed long-term investments because they know the financial benefits will accrue to another department, agency or service. It is vital to understand that the long-term pay-offs from effective early intervention will accrue to the whole of society and the wider economy, not just to the agencies or services making commissioning decisions today.”

*ENDS

Contact:
Mark Ballinger
Head of Communications, EIF
E: mark.ballinger@eif.org.uk
T: 020 3542 2481 (switchboard)

Notes:

  • The Early Intervention Foundation (EIF) is an independent charity that champions and supports the use of effective early intervention to improve the lives of children and young people at risk of experiencing negative outcomes. For more information, see: www.eif.org.uk
  • In October 2018, the Early Intervention Foundation (EIF) published Realising the potential of early intervention, a major report outlining the key barriers to be overcome and changes to be made at national and local level, to ensure effective early intervention is available for the children and families who need it most. Available at: https://www.eif.org.uk/reports/realising-the-potential-of-early-intervention