Bid now to support vulnerable victims

Merseyside / December 28

Merseyside's Police Commissioner is today urging charities, third sector and voluntary organisations to apply for a share of nearly £600,000 to deliver four vital victim support services as part of the Victim Care Merseyside service.

In November last year, Jane Kennedy announced her plans to further improve the care for vulnerable victims of crime from 2018 onwards by expanding some of the existing support services and commission a number of new services aimed at plugging the gaps created by new and emerging crime types.

To increase the consistency and provide increased stability for victims, Jane has also pledged to commission all the services delivered under the Victim Care Merseyside umbrella for the next three years, from 2018 to 2021.

Now, the Commissioner is inviting bids to deliver four of the key support service contracts under the Victim Care Merseyside umbrella, with the aim of providing the best possible care to help victims cope and recover. The services are:

  • A dedicated child exploitation service, for young victims of both sexual and criminal exploitation and provide support for children missing from home (£182,000);
  • A vulnerable victim’s service which provides support for anyone receiving additional support after a crime or anti-social behaviour, including cyber crime and fraud (£187,000);
  • An enhanced service supporting victims of rape and sexual assault across Merseyside (£172,500);
  • A restorative justice service which enables victims who want to get answers from their offenders to explore their options (£50,000);

All four contracts can be viewed and bidded for via online e-tendering system Blue Light

Jane said: “Nobody chooses to be a victim of crime, and when someone does suffer at the hands of others it is only right that they get the support to help them cope and recover.

“I am determined to provide the right support services for the most vulnerable victims through the Victim Care Merseyside service. A huge amount of time and energy has been invested into identifying where more support is needed and ensuring the services I am providing help the people who need it most.

“I want to get the very best organisations to deliver these services, which is why I am now inviting bids to deliver these new and expanded contracts from 2018 onwards. I know there are some fantastic organisations out there and I want to ensure I get the most dedicated, effective and skilled providers. I am looking forward to review the bids we receive to ensure victims of crime are offered the best possible services with the money which is available.”

Jane Kennedy first began to deliver some victim support services in 2014, before Victim Care Merseyside was officially launched in June 2015, after powers to commission victim support services were passed to Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) from the Ministry of Justice (MoJ).

In early 2017, the Commissioner took the decision to undertake a full review of the existing Victim Care Merseyside and assess if any new services were needed to make sure vulnerable victims of crime were receiving the best possible care. Between May and October last year, a detailed Victim Needs Assessment was carried out by the Commissioner’s team.

It incorporated extensive crime data reviews, a ‘what works’ literature review, a victim service mapping exercise and feedback sessions with service providers. Crucially it also involved extensive consultation with victims of crime, including an online survey, focus groups and one-to-one interviews. A special workshop was also held with nearly 40 support organisations with the aim of identifying ‘hidden’ crimes that may still be going on undetected and out of sight.

In light of the findings from this comprehensive assessment, the Commissioner announced her plans to further improve and expand upon the existing package of care and support over the next three years.

Commissioning workshop

In order to support and advice any organisation interested in applying for the services, a free dedicated commissioning workshop is being held by the PCC’s team at 1pm on Tuesday 9th January.

The event, which is taking place at LCVS at 151 Dale Street in Liverpool, will enable organisations to find out more about the criteria for bidding and the application process, as well as getting one-to-one advice on project planning.

Any bids submitted via Blue Light will be put through a competitive selection process, by way of a panel, before the successful organisations are notified.

If you are interested in attending, please register here.

If you have been affected by crime and need information, help or support, please visit Victim Care Merseyside.