Early Help Advice
Tel: 01934 426329
For help with the Early Help Module (EHM)
If you do not already have a login please refer to the document getting a login for EHM
Introduction to Early Help
What is Early Help?
Please see Threshold (currently being updated)
Every family has its ups and downs. Being a parent is hard work and there are no instructions. Sometimes, families may need extra support. This may be before children are born, when they are very young, or throughout their school years. Early Help helps families recognise what’s going well for them, where they may benefit from extra help, and who is the best person to work with the family to make this happen.
In North Somerset we believe that all children and young people should be enabled to reach their fullest potential as individuals, learners and citizens.
Early Help plays a key part in achieving this vision by providing:
- interventions early in life (with young children, including pre-natal interventions)
- interventions early in the development of a problem (with children or young people of any age)
- interventions that support children and families where life is feeling difficult for a range of reasons in order to protect them from developing problems or to reduce the severity of problems that have started to emerge
Early Help is available for children and young people up to the age of 18 and their families who may need extra support. Early Help is entirely voluntary, so if you don’t think it is right for your child, then you don’t have to consent to Early Help.
Early Help support may include parenting, education, employment, healthy living and emotional wellbeing, managing finances, as well as preventing anti-social behavior. This support can be provided at lots of different places and by different people.
We believe that children and families should be heard when they first ask for help to reduce adverse experiences for them. For many children and families, their needs will be met through services available within their everyday routines such as Schools, Colleges, Health or Children’s Centre’s.
These services can be accessed directly, without a referral. If you need additional support you can talk to a professional who knows your family already.
Children’s Centre’s provide a range of services for families with children under five. For children and young people aged 0 to 25 with special educational needs and disabilities, you can also have a look at the SEND Local Offer.
Schools and Colleges apart from education provide a range of services for families over 5, please ask your child’s school for their Early Help Offer.
All school and college staff should be prepared to identify children who may benefit from early help. Early help means providing support as soon as a problem emerges at any point in a child’s life, from the foundation years through to the teenage years
For further information see 'Keeping children safe in education - Statutory guidance for schools and colleges 2016'
Health Visiting Teams provide a range of universal and targeted services for families under 5.
Voluntary Organisations also provide Early Help support in liaison with universal services.
You can search the directory to find help and information about:
- Health and wellbeing
- Education and attainment
- Employment and training
- Family Support
- Crime and Anti social behaviour
- Domestic violence
- And much more...
For more information contact:
Early Help Advice
Tel: 01934 426 329
Where a child appears to be at risk please contact the Single Point of Access (SPA) on 01275 888 808
The Role of the Early Help Coordinator
The term ‘Early Help Coordinator’ is North Somerset’s term for the role ‘Lead Professional’. This decision was taken by multi-agencies at the Early Help Module consultation stage.
The Early Help Coordinator will initially be the professional that identifies the need for Early Help intervention. However, the Early Help Coordinator role can be transferred at any time throughout the open Early Help Episode with parental consent.
The Early Help Module will automatically send tasks to the Early Help Coordinator’s work tray. However, providing a professional is named in the Consent Statement, which is agreement with the person(s) holding Parental Responsibility for the child, the multi-agency member of the group is able to complete or add any of the tasks in the Early Help Module.
North Somerset’s Early Help Strategy sets out the expectation that the provision of Early Help is a multi-agency responsibility and therefore, the Early Help Module has been configured to be flexible so that any agency can contribute to the case. The Early Help Module has been designed for multi-agency input and is not a prescriptive process.
It would be good practice to:
- Hold Team Around the Family meetings
- Complete multi-agency Early Help Assessments
- Complete multi-agency care plans to identify the needs of the child
This is supported by Working Together 2015 which states:
- Local agencies should work together to put processes in place for the effective assessment of the needs of individual children who may benefit from early help services.
- Children and families may need support from a wide range of local agencies. Where a child and family would benefit from coordinated support from more than one agency (e.g. education, health, housing, police) there should be an inter-agency assessment. These early help assessments, such as the Common Assessment Framework, should identify what help the child and family require to prevent needs escalating to a point where intervention would be needed via a statutory assessment under the Children Act 1989”.
Tel: 01934 426329