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Council to host Social Inclusion Conference

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COPELAND Borough Council will host the first Social Inclusion Conference this month to highlight the wide range of support that is available for residents in the borough.

The council and its partners have an extensive Social Inclusion Programme, designed to provide equal opportunities for residents of all ages.

This includes projects to: support those who are suffering domestic abuse; increase access to work and skills programmes for unemployed residents; involving children and young people in community development; and a wide range of discretionary services provided by Copeland Council.

The conference takes place on Friday, February 28 at St Bees Management Centre. Hosted by Mike Starkie, Mayor of Copeland, the speakers are:

-          Trudy Harrison, MP for Copeland

-          Jamie Reed, Head of Corporate Affairs at Sellafield Ltd

-          Hazel Blears, Advisor to Well Whitehaven

-          Joanne Crowe, Operations Manager at Phoenix Enterprise Centre

-          Suzanne Wilson, Research Fellow in Social Inclusion and Community Engagement at the Centre for Citizenship and Community, University of Central Lancashire

-          Angie Dean, Centre Development Manager at Women Out West

-          Julie Betteridge, Director of Growth and Inclusive Communities at Copeland Borough Council

Mr Starkie said: “The aim of our conference is to showcase the commitment from Copeland Council and our extensive team of partners that we are absolutely committed to providing all residents of the borough with equal opportunities throughout their lives.

“I believe our social inclusion programme is unprecedented among local authorities across the country and, through strong partnership working, we continue to develop and reinforce the programme, providing positive results wherever we look.

“This conference will give ourselves and partners the opportunity to showcase areas of our work that may flow under the radar for some, but they are areas that should be the focus of all our attention moving forward.

“Bringing together partners from the voluntary, community, public and private sectors, we will demonstrate that we are delivering a coherent programme of projects that continues to have positive impacts for some of the most vulnerable people in our society.

“I have stated on many occasions that social, financial and digital inclusion is Copeland Council’s number one priority, and this conference highlights and demonstrates this commitment in action.”

** Please note that this event is by invitation only. Members of the media are invited to attend the conference, and to interview speakers before or after. It runs from 10am to 1pm. Please confirm attendance by emailing andrew.clarke@copeland.gov.uk by 5pm on Friday, February 21.