Future of Mount Estate family centre is uncertain

PARENTS using the council run family support centre on the Mount Estate, Milford Haven have been left dismayed after hearing the ‘much needed’ centre may be closed in the new year.

One mother, who did not want to give her name, said that she and others could not believe that ‘such a vital service’ may be lost.

The family centre provides a place for mothers, fathers and families to get support and advice on numerous matters including financial and personal guidance.

“We’ve been informed by the mother’s group that the building’s getting suspended and will no longer be in use after Christmas so the support resource centre for us mums is to go too. We’re losing everything; we won’t have anywhere to go.

“These places are our sort of lifeline and they’re being taken away from us. A lot of the mums that attend there are in need, how are they going to cope?

“It’s just such a shame. Poverty now is so bad, some mums attend this place as it’s all they have got. It’s a support network, you can come and chat to other mums or if they need advice there is someone to help, some of the mums are quite vulnerable.

“Poverty is getting worse in Pembrokeshire but resources are stopping. It’s phenomenal the amount of children on the Mount, they need something,” added the concerned mum.

A Pembrokeshire County Council spokesman said: “We are in the process of reorganising our family support services with the aim of improving services to vulnerable families across the county.

“As part of this work we are reviewing services at all our family centres – including the centre on the Mount Estate. This review is still taking place.”

Other family centres listed by Pembrokeshire County Council are in Haverfordwest, Fishguard, Neyland and Pembroke.

When asked if these remained open a spkesman said: "Due to large scale investment (£2 million), we are developing a different approach to our family support services.

"It is anticipated that services will centre on families in their communities, rather than focussing around specific buildings.

"We are developing the Team Around the Family service and also - thanks to significant investment from Welsh Government - developing flying start centres in key areas across the county.

"This has reduced our need to deliver services from specific centres, and instead reach out to families in their own homes.

"As a result of this change of approach, we are currently reviewing the provision of Family Centres."

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