More than 100 charities urge Chancellor to put #ChildrenAtTheHeart of spending

Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity is calling on the Chancellor Phillip Hammond to put children, young people and families at the heart of government spending plans to be announced in next Monday’s Budget (29 October).

Along with more than 130 other charities, we have signed a joint letter to the Chancellor urging investment in services and support for children. This includes compelling evidence that these are at breaking point. For instance, only three in 100 families of disabled children think that the health and care services available to their family are adequate, and the number of children with special educational needs who are awaiting provision has more than doubled since 2010. Together we are urging the Government to act swiftly to put children at the heart of its spending decisions.

Zillah Bingley, CEO of Rainbow Trust, said:

‘The families that we support live with the practical, emotional and financial strain of caring for a seriously ill child, as well as the needs of their healthy siblings. Supporting them to cope with their situation can prevent further stress for the whole family and reduce longer term costs to the health and social care system. Yet the evidence suggests that it is getting harder and harder for children and families to access local support and services. At the same time, the need for support is rising, and Rainbow Trust saw a 12% rise in the number of families that we worked with last year.

We urge the Chancellor to do the right thing - to put children at the heart of decisions about spending on 29 October and to seize this opportunity to invest in the services and support that they urgently need.’

Sustained budgetary pressures on Local Authorities mean that it is harder than ever for Rainbow Trust to access local funding sources, with just 2.4% of its income coming from statutory sources in 2017-18. This is despite the fact our services can prevent huge costs for the health and social care systems by enabling families to cope better at a time of extreme stress and worry.

You can read the letter here.

You can sign a petition here.