Effective early help is about providing the right draw children of early age to families, at the right time, to achieve change that lasts. This means doing this early before problems get worse. It is available to families with children and young people of any age. Children, young people and their families will often work best with those who already know them, with some extra support from the Early Help Service.
The Early Help Service aims for families to increase their ability to manage difficulties in the future, working alongside partner and community networks, to reduce their reliance on long-term services and support. We work with families who are committed to behavioural change and consent to us being involved. It puts children, young people and families at the centre of the offer and develops a plan that addresses the needs of the whole family. C4C will be timely and flexible, with a focus on direct work with families, making sure that the emphasis is on what is working well and what needs to change for the family, in order to make sure that children are safe and able to benefit from the opportunities open to them. The Early Help Service also has a dedicated Youth Team delivering activities and interventions provision at Bruce Grove and other sites, including specific responses to the needs of young carers.
This team works closely with targeted teams and schools to support delivery of Haringey’s Young People’s strategy. Families can face challenges with a range of issues and Haringey’s Early Help Service can offer advice and guidance as well as practical, hands-on support, with a whole family approach. We will work alongside you with other professionals to enable you to make and sustain the changes needed to improve your family situation. Supporting you and your family, and understanding your concerns, we will create an action plan describing how we will work together to help you, supported by other professionals and services. We want to understand your family’s strengths and what is not working so well.
To do this, we will work in partnership with you and, with your consent, we will work alongside colleagues from areas such as employment, health and education, who may know you well and are also able to help. Working together, we will address the issues you and your family are facing and, over time, build your confidence, knowledge and skills to enable you to deal with future challenges. Conversations 4 Change’ we want to help you and your family overcome challenges you may be struggling with. Your commitment and willingness to change is key to a brighter future. If you think the Early Help Service could support you, please speak to your children’s centre, school or health visitor and they can contact us on your behalf. If you have concerns about a child’s safety see our safeguarding section below. The named Early Help professional will work with the whole family and deliver interventions that may for example, focus on parenting support and managing difficult behaviour or family routines, using evidence based interventions.
The Lead Professional will work jointly with the TAF network taking responsibility to support the family to achieve change. They will be supported in thinking critically about the progress being made and should there be concerns that children are not safe, these would be discussed with the TAF and stepped up into Children’s Safeguarding and Support Service as appropriate. Early Help will also offer additional support to schools in the borough, with a menu of options available. Please see the link below for a description of this. The teams provide flexible, hands on support and interventions for families, children and young people with additional needs. This is led in each of the three areas by a Locality Manager, who works with local networks to promote and embed integrated, whole family working supported by the use of Conversations 4 Change.
The Early Help Service also includes the Youth Team, which provides a universal youth provision offer, as well as practitioners working within the Localities. There are also leads for Young Carers and the Youth Council. The Early Help Service can be accessed when the universal offer and support available in schools, children’s centres and health centres doesn’t meet the family needs. The Early Help Service is guided by standards to promote a high quality service. Families appropriate for C4C are those with additional needs, which cannot be met by universal settings, or emerging concerns that the family may need support from Children’s Services. If you are working with a family you think might benefit from the additional support offered by the Early Help Service, please contact your locality team for a discussion.
Haringey’s integrated response to support families in need of Early Help is a multi-agency collaboration of support services that responds to families at a Tier 2 threshold, under London Safeguarding Children’s Board guidelines. Please note this form is not for general service requests or issues. It’s quicker for you if those comments are sent directly to Customer Services. I’m an advocate for play in early childhood settings. Play isn’t a child’s only way of learning. Play isn’t the only practice that our Early Years Learning Framework encourages educators to draw on to promote children’s learning. Educators need to have a rich repertoire of practices up their sleeves, and learning through play is only one of them.