While a lack of money in the family remains a central part of the problem, child poverty is the outcome of economic, environmental and social factors that can damage a child’s development and limit or prevent children and young people from having many of the experiences and opportunities that others take for granted. Many children living in poverty have an unequal start in life and will become part of a perpetual cycle where they are less likely to achieve their academic potential or secure a job as an adult. They are also more likely to experience a range of health inequalities throughout their lives.
Helping families with children overcome poverty will make a huge difference not only to their lives but to the lives of their families, communities and to society as a whole. Ending child poverty means tackling a wide range of complex issues to improve children's chances in life and empowering families to move themselves out of poverty for good.
Plan to tackle child poverty in Plymouth over next three years
Breaking the cycle of Child Poverty – equipping Plymouth to deliver
A new three-year plan sets out how Plymouth City Council will work to break the cycle of child poverty and ensure that children living in the city are given the opportunity to achieve their full potential. The Child Poverty Action Plan for 2022 to 2025 was agreed at Cabinet on the 6 October 2022 following support from the cross-party Child Poverty Cabinet Advisory Group. The plan has four key themes:
- Income and employment: ensuring the benefits of economic growth are felt be everyone and supporting the Skills for Plymouth plan.
- Health and wellbeing: supporting children’s emotional and physical wellbeing and continuing the oral health improvement programme.
- Education and transitions: improving literacy levels, supporting children in Early Years settings to be ‘school ready’ and giving young people the skills to transition into adulthood.
- Partnerships: working with private and voluntary sector partners to mitigate child poverty.
Each theme includes a number of priorities and proposed outcomes. These include increasing the number of childcare places available in areas of deprivation, improving literacy in children living in low income families, reducing the prevalence of obesity in children and improving children’s dental hygiene.