After being elected as a Dorset County Councillor in 1997, I became a school governor for many years at Holy Trinity Infants School. Government money was provided to DCC for a lovely new primary school.

I was also a member of the management committee for Steps youth club in Westham, where an excellent new centre was built, again with government money.

Sadly, progress has now been halted or even reversed. Some children are living in poverty and rely on school dinners and breakfast clubs for their meals. In school holidays, their parents often have to rely on food banks to feed their family.

Sure Start centres, started by the previous government and which have provided families with help and peer support, have been closed down.

Many older children are being excluded from school, and this can be linked directly to drug use and knife crime.

The youth service in Dorset has in reality been abolished. The advice, help and support for young people which youth leaders provided are not there anymore.

A few youth clubs are minimally surviving thanks to the dedication of volunteer youth workers, but not nearly enough.

And now Waves is being closed because of lack of funding. Waves has been a beacon of hope for vulnerable young adults where they can access advice and help.

This could all be avoided. We are the sixth richest country in the world! In the coming local elections, don’t believe any candidate who tells you that everything is wonderful. It is NOT!

Rosemary Smith

Lodge Way

Wyke Regis