Prevention and Early Help
Prevention and Early Help is the name we give to the way we support families and communities in Bradford.
Prevention is about stopping problems emerging in the first place. Early Help is about preventing problems that are happening from getting worse.
We want to make sure families receive prompt and assertive help as early as possible when needs are identified, either by families themselves asking for help or professionals having worries or seeing needs before they become problematic.
It can include both support to the family in the earliest years of a child’s life and a swift response to the emergence of a problem at any stage later in their lives. A good Early Help plan supports the parents so they can make things better for their children.
GPs, health visiting, schools, Colleges, Family Hubs, school nurses, youth services, child care or other community settings often provide most support through working together on a day-to-day basis.
All schools and colleges are expected to set out how they will provide support to pupils, particularly those with special educational or additional needs.
Early Help Plans
Early Help also happens when services already working with families identify the need for a multi-agency plan. Those practitioners identifying the need for multi-agency support should complete an Early Help Assessment with the family to identify strengths and needs, co-ordinate a Team Around the Family Meeting and share information (with consent) with other agencies. They are drawing on the people who already work with them and the family.
At the first Team Around the Family Meeting a lead worker will be agreed with the family, who will continue to co-ordinate support and be the key contact for the family to make sure the plan is addressing their needs and progress is being made.
Who should I contact if I need support?
If you are a professional and want to find out about local activities and support for children, families and young people, please visit the Families Information Service website and/or SEND Local Offer, which provides information and services for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities, including short breaks.
You can also speak to someone from the Families Information Service by contacting:
Telephone helpline: 01274 437503
Who should I contact if I still think the family needs additional early help and support?
As part of our prevention and early help offer, each Family Hub area delivers targeted support groups in partnership with other organisations like local schools and the voluntary sector. The groups we presently provide are outlined in the Quick Guide.
For a timetable of the groups and activities planned in your area, please visit the Family Hub webpage. Please note that we do not publish dates of the Freedom programmes but they are run in each hub area.
In order to ensure families get to the right Hub area and type of support quickly we need all referrers to:
- STEP ONE: Check the main family post code to identify the Family Hub area.
- STEP TWO: Complete the referral/registration form for group work with the relevant family members. In order to accept a referral, we ask that the referral and group is discussed with the family, the family are given a copy of the relevant section of the Quick Guide and that they give their SIGNED consent.
- STEP THREE: Send the fully completed form to the correct Hub area for the family’s address.
Once received, each Family Hub will review the referral within 24 hours and will be in touch if they need to clarify any information.
You and the family will then be provided with details of the next available place on the group for the family member to attend.
For most of the groups fully completed referral forms should be sent directly to the relevant Family Hub:
firstname.lastname@example.org / 01274 434940
email@example.com / 01274 436700
firstname.lastname@example.org / 01535 618005
email@example.com / 01274 437523
For CYGNET completed referrals go to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Quick Guide also includes the form to be used for referring a child to wellness recovery action plan (WRAP) groups.
Who should I contact if I think the family has more complex needs and may need a period of Family Key Work?
The Early Help Gateway receives referals for Family Key Work. You need to make a referal for Familky Key Work using the multi-agency referal form (MARF). Please also refer to the Continuum of Need and Risk Identification Tool which offers guidance for improving outcomes for children and young people through the early identification of need, risk and vulnerability.
The Early Help Gateway It is made up of workers and managers from Early Help, the Police and Families Information Service. There is also involvement from social workers and Primary Mental Health Link Workers. They will use Signs of Safety in their conversations with you. If you need to email the gateway and have a secure email, please email: Childrens.Enquiries@bradford.gov.uk
If you have a Bradford Schools Online account please return your completed form(s) using the PostBox. Ensure you select the “TEH – Request for support” folder from the list of folders on the left before clicking the Upload File button.
Good practice would be to complete the referral form with the parent. This means you can obtain as much detail as possible.
In order to process your referral for Family Key Work in a timely manner we need the following information to be included:
- Clear indication that the person with parental responsibility has given consent -we will accept verbal consent at this stage but this must be clearly indicated on the referral form.
- Family address including postcode and any other significant adults the family have -these may be a source of support.
- All people living in the child’s household including their dates of birth and ethnic origin.
- Agencies that the family may already be involved with.
- If any of the children you are referring have a EHCP or a disability diagnosis it would be useful if you could also attach the plan/multi agency diagnosis report.
Using Signs of Safety means the Gateway staff will focus on:
- what is the family member or worker worried about?
- what is going well for the family and who already helps them?
- how we think extra support may help this family?
Who do I contact if I think a child is at risk of harm?
If you have a concern that a child is being harmed as a result of abuse or neglect, YOU MUST NOT keep these concerns to yourself. You should call:
- Children’s Initial Contact Point – 01274 435600 during office hours
- At all other times, call the Emergency Duty Team on 01274 431010
- If you have reason to believe that a child is at immediate risk of harm, contact the police on 999