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News Report Page 11 of 18
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Bill Esterson MP joins Mayor of Sefton to celebrate start of Park Palace Ponies summer School at Aintree Racecourse

Pictured are Bill Esterson, MP for Sefton Central, Mayor of Sefton Cllr Clare Carragher and her son Niall, Merseyside Police and Crime Commissioner Emily Spurrell, Park Palace Ponies director Bridget Griffin, and Saffie the pony.

BILL Esterson MP's Sefton Central constituency includes Aintree Racecourse and he thanked Park Palace Ponies and Aintree Racecourse for offering children from across the City Region the chance to learn about horses and to ride a pony.

Mr Esterson said:- "Congratulations to Park Palace Ponies for their big success in giving children from across the City Region the chance to ride a horse. It is wonderful that we have such fantastic facilities in our community, home to the biggest horse race in the world. A big thank you to Aintree racecourse for letting Bridget Griffin and her team bring children from the inner City to Aintree."

2022 marks Park Palace Ponies' 2nd year in partnership with Aintree Racecourse for their:- 'Trevor Hemmings Learn to Ride Summer School.'

Park Palace Ponies aims to make horse riding more accessible for inner City areas offering fully funded riding lessons to 1st time riders aged 7-10. On Friday 22nd July, Aintree Racecourse hosted the launch event for this year's summer programme. The event brought together many faces from the Liverpool community, including:- many of the young people involved with the programme, as well as some of the ponies themselves!

Dickon White, Aintree and North West Regional Jockey Club Director, commented on how wonderful it was to bring such a meaningful project to the world famous racecourse.

Bill Esterson MP said:- "It was fabulous to meet everyone, to hear from Mr White about the support that Aintree Racecourse is offering. I know that the Mayor of Sefton, Cllr Clare Carragher, and Merseyside Police and Crime Commissioner Emily Spurrell were also thrilled to be involved and we all loved the chance to meet the ponies and everyone who is part of this fabulous summer School. I think that the ponies enjoyed the attention, especially the extra mints they were given by some of the guests."

£2.2m cash injection for community based support for survivors of sexual violence and domestic abuse

A huge cash boost of more than £2.2m to enhance and expand community based support for survivors of domestic abuse and sexual violence has been announced by the Region's Police Commissioner. Emily Spurrell confirmed the 3 year funding injection, which totals:- £2,235,738, after visiting 1 of the successful recipients, Knowsley domestic abuse charity The 1st Step, to give them the good news in person. The Huyton based organisation has been allocated:- £250,000 from that pot to run a host of weekly therapeutic programmes aimed at supporting survivors and their families, helping them to rebuilding their confidence and recover from the trauma they have experienced, as well as working to raise awareness of domestic abuse across the Borough to encourage more victims to report. The 1st Step are 1 of 9 grassroots domestic abuse charities which will benefit from the extra money, with 6 sexual violence charities also receiving additional funding to increase and expand the support they can provide to those in most need.

Merseyside's Police Commissioner Emily Spurrell said:- "This huge cash boost for our brilliant community based support services is fantastic news for victims and for communities across the Region. It was a real treat to visit The 1st Step in Huyton to deliver the good news to them in person. Our grassroots charities are on the frontline of support, providing life saving and life changing care to some of the most vulnerable victims of crime in our communities. These organisations are hugely dedicated, yet they are often desperately stretched, and as a result, are forced to spend much of their valuable time fund-raising just to make ends meet. This major cash injection will come as a huge relief to them and significantly increase their capacity to support those who need it most."

First Step's Chief Executive Caroline Grant said:- "This additional funding has come at a critical time for survivors of domestic abuse in Knowsley. Demand and need continues to rise and this funding means we can respond to those in crisis more effectively, and ensure survivors are able to receive key interventions and ongoing support that will make a difference to their safety and quality of life."

Domestic Abuse services awarded grants:-

Organisation Area Grant per year Proposed Service Details
AMADUDU Women's Refuge Liverpool £38,000 Provision of 1 part time childcare development worker and 2 floating support staff.  Supporting BAME victims specifically.
Chrysalis Centre for Change St Helens £58,000 Provision of counsellors to provide weekly support/crisis sessions & a coordinator.  Provides an increase in the support available to the area.
The First Step Knowsley £84,000 Provision of a variety of support including delivery of the Freedom programme (low-med risk group sessions for DA victims), the Hope2Recovery programme and the You, Me & Mum Group.
Health Energy Advice Team Liverpool £51,000 Provision of a full time Project Supervisor.
Paul Lavelle Foundation Wirral £30,698 Support services for male survivors of domestic abuse.
South Liverpool Domestic Abuse Services Liverpool £50,000 Provision of weekly drop-in sessions for victims of DA & a part-time support worker.
Tomorrow's Women Wirral Wirral £60,000 Provision of group support sessions, counselling sessions and  specialist support for young females.
WEB Merseyside Wirral £18,000 Provision of 2x60 hr Teenage DA & Trauma Recovery programmes per year.  Plus 2 Counselling facilitators and specialist sessional work to include holistic and sound therapies.
Sefton Women's and Children's Aid (SWACA) Sefton £71,000 Provision of 1 adult complex cases caseworker, 1 fulltime Children’s worker for specialist Sibling abuse work, 1 part-time outreach worker in Southport to improve engagement with SWACA services.
  Total per year  =



The new funding pot was secured from the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) in addition to the annual grant the Commissioner receives to run her specialist Victim Care Merseyside service, enabling her to further enhance and expand the support the available to some of the most vulnerable victims across the Region. To allocate the funding, the PCC appealed to community based organisations across Merseyside to bid for additional funding. She then carried out an extensive due diligence panel to review all the bids and decide how and where the money could make the biggest difference across Merseyside.

Emily Spurrell added:- "Victims of sexual violence and domestic abuse deserve the best possible care and support to help them recover from the traumatic ordeal they have suffered. Through this additional funding we can reach even more victims and ensure they get the support they need in their local community. It's particularly pleasing the Ministry of Justice finally listened to our calls and released this funding on a 3 year basis. This will give these frontline organisations the stability and security to offer the best possible service to victims of crime and free them up from time consuming fund raising to concentrate on the vital job of supporting those in need. We received 24 bids requesting more than £5m of funding in total and while this is a huge investment, my only regret is that I wasn't able to give funding to every organisation which applied, all of which are doing great work in their communities. I'd like to thank my Commissioning team and all the partners who worked so hard on this successful bid which will make such a big difference to thousands of people across Merseyside over the next 3 years."

Among the successful organisations who have been awarded additional funding to support victims of domestic abuse are the South Liverpool Domestic Abuse Service (SLDAS) who will receive an extra £150,000, Sefton Women's and Children's Aid (SWACA) who have been awarded £213,000 and Tomorrow's Women Wirral who will benefit from an extra £180,000 over 3 years.

The organisations who have been awarded additional funding to support victims of sexual violence include:- the Commissioner's Victim Care Merseyside partners:- RASA, RASASC, Catch 22 and Savera UK, as well Changing Living and the Granby Somali Women's Group.

Sexual Violence services awarded grants:-

Organisation Area Grant per year Proposed Service Details
Pan Merseyside Missing & Child Exploitation Service (Catch 22) Pan-Merseyside £31,000 To fund 2x FTE CSE support workers to work across Merseyside.
Changing Lives (Red Umbrella Project) Pan-Merseyside £46,000 To ensure continuation of the core Red Umbrella service for 3 yrs, including 1x 0.5 FTE Service manager, 1x SWISVA and 1x Sexual Exploitation Outreach worker.
Granby Somali Women's Group Liverpool £69,000 Provision of 2x weekly drop-in sessions, 1x part-time Bilingual counsellor & 1x part-time project manager.  Specifically supporting BAME victims of SV.
Rape and Sexual Abuse (RASA) Centre Limited Wirral, Sefton and Liverpool £73,000 To fund 1x Children’s Counsellor, 1x Communities Counsellor, 1x Complex caseworker plus 4x remote counsellors.
Rape and Sexual Abuse Support Centre Knowsley and St Helens £24,000 To fund the salary and supervision costs of 1x FTE Therapist.
Savera UK Pan-Merseyside £29,000 Provision of 10x sessions of Trauma therapy for 30 clients.

Total per year =


If you have been affected by crime, please visit:- VictimCareMerseyside.Org for information, advice and the details of more than 70 organisations on hand across Merseyside which can offer you support.

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