Education written question – answered on 9th June 2011.

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Photo of Sheila Gilmore Sheila Gilmore Labour, Edinburgh East

To ask the Secretary of State for Education

(1) how much his Department spent on relationship support services with respect to family separation in each of the last four years;

(2) whether the funding allocated for relationship support services with respect to family separation in the next four years is additional to existing grant spending in this area.

Photo of Sarah Teather Sarah Teather The Minister of State, Department for Education

In December 2010, the Prime Minister announced a dedicated fund of £30 million over the next four years to support couple relationships. The majority of this funding will be allocated to the voluntary and community sector. Prior to this there was no dedicated funding for relationship support services.

From April 2006 to March 2011, some funding was granted to voluntary and community sector organisations to deliver relationship support services as part of the Children, Young People and Families (CYPF) Grant programme. This funding was awarded as part of support for families more generally, so cannot be separated out in detail for the whole of this period, but the funding to organisations delivering a range of relationship support over the period 2009-11 was £10 million. In addition, across the period 2009-11 funding of £4.5 million was made available to fund child poverty pilots which specifically focused on supporting parents through separation.

The CYPF grant was replaced by the VCS grant in April 2011 with the aim of increasing the take-up and availability of relationship support. Work funded under this grant covers all stages of relationships including those experiencing separation.

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