Local and national partners will be coming together in Alloa on Monday (3 October) to explore the changing face of poverty in our communities and how the key drivers of poverty can be tackled amid the current cost of living crisis.
The Challenge Poverty Conference is hosted by the Clackmannanshire Alliance and will feature key speakers from the Poverty Alliance and the Fraser of Allander Institute.
Cost of living crisis workshops will also take place to explore topics including fuel poverty, income maximisation and income from employment. These will be facilitated by representatives from organisations such as the Council, NHS Forth Valley, Clackmannanshire Citizens Advice Bureau, Social Security Scotland and the Scottish Government.
Clackmannanshire Family Wellbeing Partnership will also host an event to explore the success of the recent innovative LENS event where local groups came forward to seek investment for their ideas to help improve lives in their communities. The event will also help take community ideas and shape them to be pitched at the next Investment Day, along with details of the help and support available.
Council Leader Ellen Forson said: “We are all aware of the very real pressures our residents are facing during this cost of living crisis, and it is important that we come together with both local and national partners to explore what actions can be taken to help support them. The conference, which is the third one we have organised, will hear from experts in their field on the changing face of poverty in our communities, hearing the national perspective to help inform our work here in Clackmannanshire, with a real emphasis on the cost of living crisis.
“The innovative work of the Clackmannanshire Family Wellbeing Partnership will also be highlighted, showing the real action we’re taking to help communities come together to secure funding for their priorities that will help support local people.
“Everyone has put a lot of effort into make this event possible and I’d like to thank all involved.”
NHS Forth Valley Chief Executive, Cathie Cowan, is the opening speaker at Monday’s event. She said: “Tackling poverty is one of the main ways in which we can improve health and wellbeing and by working together with partners and local communities we can make a real difference.
“Poverty can affect the health of people at all ages. In infancy, it is often associated with lower birthweight and children living in poverty are more likely to suffer from illness and chronic disease. It is also associated with poorer mental health and shorter life expectancy.
“Supporting people to find a job and helping them to keep well and stay well can lead to positive short and long-term life changing improvements. That is why we are committed to working with Clackmannanshire Council and other partners to do everything we can to improve the health and wellbeing of local people.”