A Wiltshire support group which helps vulnerable families has been praised after a busy, but successful first year.

Wiltshire Families First, which is commissioned by Wiltshire Council and run by children’s charity Action for Children, offers support and early intervention to families who are facing problems with substance misuse, domestic violence or mental illness.

It has helped 96 children and 78 families in the area in the last 12 months.

Esther Schmidt, Action for Children’s service manager for Wiltshire Families First, said: “We work hard to help parents in Wiltshire better understand and respond to the needs of their children early on.

“During the next year we will be working with staff to reach families that think they don’t need the service, and we will also be looking at developing specialisms within the team, such as nutrition, finance, equalities and housing, and substance misuse and domestic abuse.”

Councillor Laura Mayes, cabinet member for children services said; “Wiltshire Council fully supports Wiltshire Families First who are working very successfully with many families who are experiencing a range of difficult issues in their lives.

“Their hands-on approach is excellent, and I am glad to see families benefiting from the support. We look forward to continuing to work in partnership with them as they develop their service.”