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What is Pause?
Pause works with women who have experienced, or are at risk of, repeat removals of children from their care. We do this by creating a space for women to change.

We allow time for them to focus on themselves and this can sometimes be the first time they have ever had the opportunity to do that. Every person we work with is treated as an individual and by building relationships underpinned by trust and respect, we support the women to re-build their lives, their self-esteem and develop their aspirations.

Pause aims to break the cycle of repeat removal by intervening at a point when the women have no children in their care. We know that women are often dealing with many issues including domestic abuse, substance misuse and mental health issues but we work to give them the opportunity to focus on themselves. This allows them to develop new skills and responses that can help them create a more positive future. To do this, they are required to take the most effective form of reversible contraception during the intervention, thereby creating a space to pause, reflect, learn and aspire.

Successes so far
Over the last 18 months, St Helens has had some great success and as such we have been granted further funding to support and change the lives of more women and families in our borough.

Nine women who have gone through the programme have now graduated and a further seven are due to do so in Autumn 2019.

Congratulations to all!

According to the most recently available statistics that measure deprivation across the country, St Helens is the 36th most deprived area out of 326.

Most indicators look at:
• Low Income
• Poor Employment
• Poor Health and disability
• Education, skills and training opportunities
• Barriers to housing and services
• Living environment deprivation
• Crime Rates

However, in order to be chosen to pilot this innovative scheme, the number of children in need, Looked After Children and children subject to Child Protection Plans are also taken into account. 
St Helens has (based on the most recently available figures):

  • 480 Looked After Children

If you have had a child or children removed from your care within the last five years and are still able to have children, but currently have no children in your care, then this may be an option for you.

Every woman who embarks on their individual journey with us has different reasons for starting, different goals they'd like to achieve and unique ways in which they will get there. We provide women with the chance to take part in various local and national opportunities to learn about themselves, have their voices heard and to feel a more significant part of their own community.

Pause takes a holistic and systemic approach to practice and we will support any other members of the woman's family/network if she asks us to.

We offer 1-1 support throughout, we are completely free and we are NOT part of social services.

If you'd like to know more about the service you can contact us by calling 01744 673390 or email us at pause@sthelens.gov.uk.
One of our team can chat to you and find out whether this is the right place for you.

Meet the Team (L-R)
Sonia Rylands is a Practitioner and has worked with Looked After Children & Young People in a variety of settings for over 20 years. Sonia is passionate about helping women regain control of their lives.

Kelly Cox is the Practice Lead and has over 20 years experience working with Looked After Children, as well as adults and young people who have come into contact with the criminal justice system. Kelly is committed to doing things differently to empower women to achieve their full potential.

Ann Gillon is our Coordinator. Ann worked in the Finance industry in the private sector for 16 years before joining St Helens Council 11 years ago to work in Children’s Services. Ann enjoys being able to support our Practitioners to help women meet their goals.

Kath Seabrook is a Practitioner has over 10 years experience working with children and families in the community as well as domestic abuse services. Kath is passionate about providing a different service where women can lead the way with their own goal setting.

Penny Upton is a Practitioner who has experience of youth work and children's social care. Penny is passionate about empowering women to create and sustain change to achieve their goals.

Please feel free to download our leaflet.

Due to the succses of the programme in St Helens, we have been granted additional funding to continue our work.

You can refer yourself if, after looking at the criteria in the "Is it for me?" tab, you feel you may be suitable.

Alternatively, if you are working with a woman within St Helens who you feel fits the criteria, then please do get in touch.

Referrals will only stay open as long as we have places available.