Plans Submitted for New Children's Homes
Plans for a new purpose-built children's assessment centre and two new residential children's homes in South Tyneside have been submitted for planning approval.
The applications are for two new children's homes at Grant Street in Jarrow and Hebburn New Town while a third site at Seton Avenue in South Shields would offer overnight support on a short term basis for up to two children undergoing assessment.
The new homes would cater for children who, for whatever reason, cannot live with their birth families.
Currently, there is only one children's residential home in the Borough accommodating a maximum of up to four young people at once. Combined with a lack of foster carers, this means that young people cannot always be accommodated in the Borough and are often placed away from family and friends.
A number of information sessions for people living close by to the proposed sites have already been held and artists' impressions of the developments have been shared.
Designs for each of the three proposed sites incorporate adequate parking, including designated disabled parking and on-site electric charging points for both staff and visitors. At Seton Avenue - the site of the proposed Assessment Centre where proposals seek to house up to two children and around four staff and visitors - seven parking bays are planned.
Currently it can be very difficult to find enough places in the Borough for young people in need, with children sometimes having to go as far as Scotland and Lancashire because of a lack of places nationally.
Councillor Adam Ellison, Lead Member for Children, Young People and Families, said: "As a Local Authority we take our corporate parenting responsibility for children we care for seriously. We are fully committed to giving them the best home and parenting experience we can offer, so they can attend school, see their families and enjoy time with their friends as any child should.
"Caring for our children in their home borough maximises the success and opportunities to achieve this. Staff are always be on hand to offer support and guidance to children within our homes, and address any issues faced, as any parent does their child."
The Council is always looking for new foster carers. Anyone interested in fostering is asked to visit www.southtyneside.gov.uk/fostering or contact a fostering officer on (0191) 423 8500 or email firstname.lastname@example.org