MORE than 232 troubled families in Dorset have been helped by the government to turn their lives around in the past two years.

Councils have been praised for their efforts to help almost 4,976 families in the South West as part of the Troubled Families Programme. Communities Secretary Eric Pickles announced that 52,833 of the most troubled families in England had been put back on track by local authority teams since April 2012.

This means children are back in school for three consecutive terms where they were previously truant or excluded, high levels of youth crime and anti-social behaviour have been reduced and adults on benefits have been in work for at least three months.

Eric Pickles said: “This is good for the taxpayer, good for the families themselves and good for the communities around them.”