Kirkcaldy councillor calls for dedicated family centre to tackle child poverty

Councillor Ian Cameron
Councillor Ian Cameron

Cllr Ian Cameron, whose ward takes in two of the highest areas of deprivation in Fife, is calling on Fife Council to help provide a dedicated family centre to help those most in need.

Describing the latest child proverty figures in Kirkcaldy east as “completely unacceptable” he says the area needs somewhere like The Cottage in Templehall to provide immediate intervention in times of crisis.

“The children affected by these damning statistics need early intervention; the families supporting them have to make choices they should never have to – buy food or get the bus, heat the house or buy clothes.

“The council is providing intervention but increasingly the role of the third sector becomes part of that core support.

“Organisations such as The Cottage, Kirkcaldy YMCA and Greener Kirkcaldy are working hard to address these issues and investment in these organisations is key.

“The third sector can access external funding that the council can’t, with lots of success, but the council needs to keep core funding levels high for them because, without the means to match fund, their ability to pull in more money is compromised.

“Kirkcaldy YMCA has a major project in the Gallatown with initiatives supporting families and children, but we need more.

“We need a family centre on our doorstep to give immediate support. This is provided in part by The Cottage at Viewforth Church but this is not enough and it is an issue I am pressing the council on.

“The council’s community team is doing great work through the Gallatown Neighbourhood Development Plan. The one thing that is obvious under the continued pressure is the strength of the local communities, and that’s being encouraged through advocacy and empowerment.

“The current situation is unacceptable. When we add in Universal Credit which clearly causes additional hardship, the picture becomes even worse for many families.”