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To help prevent children and young people from going down a path of crime, Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion is boosting his investment into the CLIMB project by £200,000.

Since 2020, the PCC has funded The Children’s Society’s CLIMB Project to the tune of £600,000. The life-changing project is an early prevention and intervention scheme aimed at stopping young people from being exploited by criminals.

For the first time in West Mercia’s history, the project will now also give under-10s a space where they can discover a passion for a more positive activity, with a large portion of the cost being covered.

Some of the PCC’s investment will fund an increase in the workforce, with eight new part-time staff being hired to work with under-10s specifically; four for specific work with parents and four for children under the age of 10.

PCC John Campion said: “I am delighted to make a further investment in the CLIMB project, which is having a profound impact on young people being steered away from crime. I am pleased more children and young people will be able to benefit from the work of the CLIMB project.

“This continuing collaboration with The Children’s Society is helping to protect one of the most vulnerable groups within our community, by delivering effective early prevention and intervention, a key part of my Safer West Mercia plan.

“Young people are victims of crime, not criminals, and they are being exploited on a far too regular basis within West Mercia. As part of my Safer West Mercia plan, it is my commitment to put victims first and provide the support services needed to keep them away from harm.”

CLIMB Service Managers, Nadia Ayub and Georgia Boyce, said: “How lucky are we to have such a great a Police and Crime Commissioner in John Campion, whose passion is the same as ours. Who believes prevention is better than cure and wants to see the best for as many young people as possible.

“This expansion of the project is testament to the PCC’s commitment to reducing the risk of young people being criminally exploited or entering the criminal justice system. It is also a testament to the CLIMB team’s hard work, commitment and dedication to supporting the young people and the programme. This additional investment from the PCC will bring in new roles to support parents and much younger, young people to provide increasingly robust and holistic services to reduce vulnerabilities and increase aspirations.”

For anyone who is looking for more information on the CLIMB project and the referral process, please contact [email protected].

To find out more about the Early Intervention Practitioners, read more here.