The Holly Project: Council in long-term funding talks for survivors of child sex abuse in Telford

Services for survivors of child sexual exploitation in Telford could be funded for as long as they are needed, council bosses have said.

Telford & Wrekin Council has funded The Holly Project, based in Tan Bank, Wellington, for its first six months, but is now in talks to fund it over the long term.

Councillor Lee Carter said the project, which offers advice from survivors to survivors, is perhaps the first of its kind across the country.

"The commitment as a council is to safeguard the most vulnerable, and that will always be our number one priority," he said.

"It is something we are looking to commit to over a longer time. We've moved quickly to work with the Holly Project because this type of peer-to-peer support, based on shared life experience, is missing in the borough.

"We have helped fund this as a six-month pilot, and we're already in discussions about extending that because it is already having a huge amount of success."

Councillor Carter said it was important to protect the future of The Holly Project.

"It's going to an important part of the whole service provision going forward," he said. "We want to fund it for as long as it is needed.

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"We've got social work support, we've got the inquiry that we're funding and we've got The Holly Project. There is a whole raft of action that we're funding on this."

The Holly Project marked its official opening on Wednesday.

The service, which forms part of Wellington and District YMCA, offers a free and independent support service for CSE survivors and their families.

The opening was attended by Holly Archer, a survivor of CSE whom the project is named after.

Organisers say the project was born out of need, and aims to help victims rebuild their lives and offer hope for the future.

For more information about the project call 01952 385385.




Date: 04 August 2018 | Source: Shropshire Star

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