Almitas Trust CIC is our baby. We have worked for years on developing the idea and to date all work on the project has been funded ourselves.
We seek to bridge the gap in provision for 24/7 supported accommodation for parents who are working with social services. At present if a parent to be finds themselves under scrutiny from social services, the options are limited for them once baby arrives. Parent and child placments are available but these are not very common and can be expensive. The other option is Residential Assessment centres which are extremely expensive and also not easy to find. Often if there is a question over the abilities of the parents, care proceedings can result, and if a placement can not be found, the child will be removed and placed in foster care whilst assessments are carried out and the case moves slowly through the family courts.
This can cause immense emotional trauma to families and it puts parents at a disadvantage as it is difficult to prove your ability to parent without your child.
In these times of austerity, Local Authorities are under constant pressure to provide more for less, to meet ever increasing demands for service with less resources. We feel passionately that no parent should lose the chance to look after their child for lack of a placement. We provide a cost effective option for Local Authorities to provide support and safeguarding oversight to parents whilst longer term plans and assessments are ongoing. We provide a level of support to parents that is comparable to a parent/child foster placement, with the extra benefit of true 24/7 staffed accommodation (because with the best will in the world foster carers need to sleep sometime!). We provide ancillary services such as contact transport and supervision inclusive in our fees, which are very realistic.