We believe that families provide a nurturing environment that helps children to thrive, but sometimes they face challenges that prevent this.

We aim to support families and to find solutions to challenges, so children have the chance to develop a positive sense of self, enjoy good wellbeing, and live their lives to the full.

Current landscape

Families can face many challenges and some of them are complex: poor mental health and wellbeing, adversity and trauma, including poor mental health and wellbeing, and adversity and trauma, including domestic abuse.

Stronger Families infographic 1

There are other challenges being faced by children and young people as well, including parental imprisonment, substance misuse, unemployment and financial difficulties, poverty and food insecurity.

Our services

During 2019-20, we supported 55,000 people through our mental health services including 45,100 in school-based programmes and 9,900 in our other mental health services. We also supported 88,600 people through our early support services and 179,000 through our family support services. In total, our children’s centres and family hubs were accessed by 41,400 children and 48,200 parents. Our partnership with Essex County Council also supported a further 131,800 through our Child and Family Wellbeing Service. 

Stronger Families infographic 2

We looked at the outcomes for 969 families who received support from our children’s centres and family support services during 2019-20 across a range of domains. We agree with the family where they feel they are on a scale from being ‘stuck’ to ‘independent’ in each of the areas, and then assess their progress over time. 

Of the 969 parents and carers, the biggest changes are in: 

  • Boundaries and behaviours 
  • Meeting emotional needs 
  • Their own wellbeing

 How we’re changing

Stronger Families infographic 3

We’ve developed three strategic partnerships with local authorities in Scotland (Renfrewshire), England (North Tyneside) and Northern Ireland which aim to transform mental health and wellbeing support for children, young people and families. With our partners, we’ve been working to re-design local systems and pathways from the bottom up, so they offer true wraparound support – with prevention and early intervention at the heart.

We’re also working to embed expertise in trauma – and how it impacts development and relationships – right across our workforce and through all of our services. That will sometimes mean cultural change and sometimes mean changing an entire approach. But we’re committed to it, because we see the difference it makes.