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Evolve is Rotherham's Multi-Agency Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) Team which has a specialist focus to assess and support children and young people who have suffered, or are at risk of suffering, significant harm through CSE.

The way Rotherham deals with child sexual exploitation today is very different than in the past. Evolve now operates with a much deeper understanding of this form of abuse and works much more closely with other agencies to keep children and young people as safe as possible. No single agency can tackle child sexual exploitation alone so Evolve works across agencies, and with the local community. Victims and survivors are being put first so that they are heard and responded to.

a) The Evolve Team has recently relocated from Riverside House to the Eric Mann's Building. The Evolve Team provides 'wrap around' support and protection to children and their family, with a team of people from a variety of different support agencies. This includes social workers, a child sexual exploitation specialist nurse, a Barnardo's social worker, a social care operational manager, business support staff and police officers. Social Workers carry a low case load which enables them to complete direct work, respond flexibly and creatively to children and young people who require support and protection. The Evolve Team also provides expert advice and consultation to other social work teams within CYPS and provides monthly 'practice surgeries' for other social care teams.

b) Evolve's work focusses on a number of key themes in order to:

  • Work together with other professionals to prevent child exploitation by raising awareness in communities and educating young people around healthy relationships to detect signs of abuse
  • Keep children and young people safe and protect children who are at risk of sexual exploitation, including victims and survivors
  • Pursue perpetrators of child sexual exploitation and prosecute those who are responsible for abusing children and young people
  • Provide more support for victims and survivors of sexual exploitation in consultation with a range of different partners
  • Ensure that victims and survivors, and their families, are engaged and supported to participate in services so that their voices are heard

c) Barnardo's ReachOut Service – Launched in February 2016 this is a new service which supports children and young people in Rotherham who have been, or who are at risk of being, sexually exploited. The ReachOut Service is delivered by a team of specialist workers at the children's charity in partnership with a range of stakeholders and is funded by £3.1m from Rotherham Council, the KPMG Foundation, The Department for Education, The Communities and Local Government Department and Barnardo's. A team of 15 new workers are in post in the town to proactively engage with children, young people and families to raise awareness of spotting signs of child sexual exploitation. Alongside this the ReachOut Service also works with community groups, schools, colleges and health services.

d) The NSPCC operates the Rotherham sexual exploitation helpline which is a single point of contact for victims and survivors. The helpline is confidential and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and can be contacted by telephoning 0800 731 9256

e) Evolve works closely with a range of other groups and organisations providing dedicated CSE services in Rotherham, including:

  • Rotherham Abuse Counselling Service (RACS) – providing free professional counselling for men and women who have experienced rape, sexual abuse or domestic abuse
  • Grow - Grow provides a range of services to young people affected by child sexual exploitation and support to their families
  • Rotherham Rise - Rotherham Rise (formerly Women's Refuge) works with young people (ages 12-18) and women (age 18 plus) to provide family support and counselling
  • Swinton Lock – Swinton Lock provides support and advice for people affected by child sexual exploitation. This includes art therapy, group work, one to one support and help to access other services
  • The South Yorkshire Community Foundation - Works to fund charities, community and voluntary groups assisting those affected by child sexual exploitation
  • The Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) – SARC is a one-stop service for people of any age who have experienced rape or sexual assault
  • The Base Project – The Base Project includes a number of organisations who provide a range of services to victims and survivors of child sexual exploitation, and their families

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