New initiative supporting women is having a positive impact in Wiltshire


A new initiative to help prevent the damaging consequences of thousands of children being taken into care each year is having a positive effect in Wiltshire. 

Pause’s approach thinks differently about the way we work with women who have experienced and are at risk of repeated pregnancies resulting in children being removed from their care. 

The programme actively engages the women, supporting them through an intensive 18-month bespoke support package. It gives them the chance to “pause” and take control of their lives, breaking a destructive cycle that causes both them and their children deep trauma, as well as costing the taxpayer hundreds of millions of pounds across the country.

The Wiltshire Pause Programme was launched by Wiltshire Council in June and is working with women across the county having a positive impact. 

The support can include work around their housing circumstances, relationship breakdowns, domestic abuse, substance misuse, access to counselling, access to improved sexual health and contraception options, improving their work opportunities along with encouraging fun and happiness. 

Laura Mayes, cabinet member for children said: “This is an important programme where we work closely with women and support them to make these positive changes. 

“We foster strong, trusting relationships, working collaboratively not only with women but also with partnership agencies ensuring women on the Pause Programme have a better chance of breaking the cycle and feeling empowered to make positive decisions leading to a better future.” 

Pause Wiltshire identified a potential 99 women who between them had had 317 children removed from their care within the last three years. It is currently working with a number of these women and encouraging others to participate. 

Partners include local housing providers, sexual health, Splitz, Turning Point, Wiltshire Police, probation and education and employment agencies.

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