Organisations across Derby gather for Safer Together Summit

Published: 22 October 2021

People talking at the Safer Together Summit

Representatives discuss the Safer Together Summit

Monday 18th October saw the coming together of multiple cross-sector organisations across Derby to discuss the goal of making Derby safer for young people through a network of support and strong communication.

Derby City Council partnered with Safe & Sound and local young people from Derby to discuss the safety of children and young people in Derby. Safe & Sound specialise in offering one to one support to those young people  and families who have been affected by exploitation in Derby and Derbyshire. Whilst they have previously specialised in sexual exploitation, in 2019 they expanded their services to include support for other types of exploitation.

The Safer Together Summit included presentations from Suanne Lim (Director of Early Help and Children’s Social Care), Tracy Harrison (CEO of Safe & Sound) and Alix Manning-Jones (Opportunity Area Local Programme Manager). Several young people from Derby also gave interactive presentations about their experience growing up in Derby and Derbyshire which then sparked the conversations with those who attended about the reality of growing up in the area and what can be done to protect and improve the lives of young people affected.  Parents of young people who have been victims of exploitation also attended to event to give their advice and feedback from a family perspective.

The summit was also attended by BAFTA-winning English actor, Molly Windsor.  Molly is an ambassador for Safe & Sound and has raised awareness for sexual exploitation and abuse for several years.

On the topic of the summit, Molly Windsor said,

I think this is so unique in that it is collaborative between so many different people and I think if you were just holding a conference for say, just teachers or just social workers it would be less useful. But bringing everyone together like this, it is eye opening, and you can tell how engaged everyone is and that is such a good starting point”

One of our young speakers, Rochnee Gillespie, said,

Things need to change for the better, we need to pull together, we need to have a plan. Not just a plan, we need plans. We need plans for the future. Like I said, its for the future generations and now.”

Suanne Lim, Director of Early Help and Children’s Social Care said,

This summit really was the perfect opportunity to bring together organisations and young people to discuss the very real day to day life of those affected by exploitation and abuse in Derby and Derbyshire. By opening the floor to these conversations, we can discuss ways to improve the lives of those who grow up, live and thrive around us and offer support to those who need it”.

Through a placed based risk framework, the Safer together strategy will continue to listen and act upon the voice of young people and communities we will change organisational culture, processes and policies to build safer communities, facilitate better engagement, increase problem solving and reduce risk.

If you would like to learn more about how you can make a difference to those affected by exploitation in Derby and Derbyshire, visit the Safe & Sound Website.

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