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Decision details

Young Carers and Hidden Harm Service

Decision Maker: Executive Director, People Services

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


A Young Carers Service and a Hidden Harm Service were commissioned as separate contracts that expire in March 2019. The proposal is to recommission Young Carers Service with support for children and young people affected by substance misuse in the household, by merging the contracts and form one service to build efficiencies and mitigate against a 2.6% annual reduction to the public health grant contribution.


It is proposed that the contract is for 2 years and 9 months with break clauses after year 1 and 2. The contract value is £437,000.


(i) approval is given to recommission the Young Carers and Hidden Harm Service as one contract in line with the procurement strategy and other details set out in the report; and


(ii) authority is delegated to the Director of Finance and Commercial Services or her nominated representative to award a contract for this project.

Reasons for the decision:


The rationale for merging the two contracts to form a Young Carers and Hidden Harm Service is an overlap in criteria: 5% of young carers supported by Sheffield Young Carers, the incumbent provider, in 2017-18 were caring for family with substance misuse needs.  The delivery models for the existing Young Carers Service and WAM Hidden Harm Service are very similar and can be aligned to improve efficient access to support and achieve shared outcomes.


The proposed outcomes framework included in the Service Specification have been discussed and agreed with the incumbent providers and informed by consultation with children and young people accessing support.

Alternative options considered:


Another option would be to recommission the service as two separate contracts. However, the opportunity to mitigate against percentage reductions in the public health grant and avoid duplication of provision would be missed. The low contract value of the WAM Hidden Harm Service make percentage reductions difficult to absorb and could place the service at risk.


Discussions took place with the adult Carers Service Commissioner and Procurement Officers to explore the possibility of extending the existing contracts to align with the Adult Carers Service contract. However, it was decided that the length of time of the proposed extension could leave the Council open to challenge.

Publication date: 29/11/2018

Date of decision: 20/11/2018

Accompanying Documents: