Renfrewshire Council

Local Child Poverty Action Report

What the Local Child Poverty Action Report is, its key themes, our priorities for 2023-24, and how to read the full report

What the Local Child Poverty Action Report is

This is Renfrewshire Council's fifth Local Child Poverty Action Report. It captures the range of activity that's taken place in Renfrewshire to reduce child poverty in 2022-23. It also sets out our actions for 2023-24 and beyond.

This year, the cost-of-living crisis is significantly impacting Renfrewshire's families. The report describes the actions we've put in place to help local families deal with financial challenges. This includes immediate supports and short-term actions that sit alongside our existing initiatives and longer-term plans which support families out of poverty.

The report has three key themes

The report focuses on three themes, including:

  • providing the opportunities and integrated support parents need to enter, sustain, and progress in work
  • maximising the support available for families to live dignified lives and meet their basic needs
  • supporting the next generation to thrive.

Priorities for 2023-24

Our work to reduce child poverty, alongside the council's wider goal of improving outcomes for children and families, will help us nurture a fairer Renfrewshire. This will result in a place where all people have the best chance to live happy, healthy, and fulfilled lives - to feel safe, supported, and empowered to unlock the strength of our collective potential.

Although we've achieved much this year, we will continue to work with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, our Health and Social Care Partnership, and many other external partners, third-sector organisations, and communities to ensure low-income families get the support they need.

Here is a list of our priority actions for 2023-24, with more details on some of the specific actions below. For more information, read the full Local Child Poverty Action Report.

  1. Develop the Fairer Renfrewshire Programme.
  2. Carry out a 'deep dive' into local child-poverty data to inform future work.
  3. Develop and support the Fairer Renfrewshire Lived Experience Panel to deliberate on and guide policy and practice.
  4. Expand opportunities for parents to enter, sustain, and progress at work through the Parental Employability Support Fund.
  5. Pilot models of dedicated advice provision for families with children.
  6. Monitor the ongoing impacts of the cost-of-living crisis, continuing to respond flexibility to emerging issues.
  7. Join up support for families within communities and across partners.

Working with the Fairer Renfrewshire Panel

Last year, one of our main priorities was to gain a better understanding of the needs of local families living in poverty.

We worked with The Poverty Alliance to establish a process to meaningfully engage with people who have direct experience of poverty. This meant they could contribute to the development and implementation of local child poverty priorities. The pilot of this lived-experience group (which they themselves renamed the Fairer Renfrewshire Panel) took place this year.

One of our priorities for this year is to develop this work and gain more insights from the panel, involving more areas of the council.

Gathering deeper, richer data

Building on last year's work, our officers will continue to collect relevant data that will help us better understand the picture of child poverty in Renfrewshire; it will also help us make evidence-based policy.

Our officers will undertake a 'deep dive' child-poverty data exercise, pulling data from within the council as well as external sources to inform decision making and service delivery. While a key focus of this exercise will be the six child-poverty priority groups, it will also consider child poverty from a local area perspective - with a particular focus on understanding what drivers are increasing child poverty in some Renfrewshire areas. It will also explore the potential actions that we and our partners can take to address this.

Expanding employability services

Already, the unemployment rate in Renfrewshire has reduced to 3.1%, now lower than the Scottish rate of 3.2%. The number of accredited living wage employers in Renfrewshire has also increased to 85.

Through new posts within our employability service (Invest in Renfrewshire), we will build engagement with more parents who could benefit from employability support to help them gain or progress in work as a route out of poverty.

Read the full Local Child Poverty Action Report

Read the full report if you want to learn more about our priorities for 2023-24, what tangible outcomes we achieved last year, and other information about child poverty and our plans to reduce it in Renfrewshire.