The Early Help approach in Peterborough
In Peterborough, we believe in working with families and communities to provide children and young people with firm foundations in life so they can be happy and healthy, build resilience, achieve their aspirations and simply ‘be their best’.
We always aim to provide help for children and families early in life and early in the development of a problem.
Support from Early Help can be accessed through the completion of an Early Help Assessment. The Early Help Assessment, previously known as the Common Assessment Framework (CAF) is an assessment tool used by a wide range of professionals working with children, young people and families who may have additional needs within the arena of Early Help. The Early Help Assessment process will help to identify additional support and coordinate the support around the family.
The nationally funded Troubled Families programme, known within Peterborough as Connecting Families, is coordinated through the Early Help team.
The Connecting Families programme is directed at families with multiple and complex needs across at least two of the following categories:
- Parents or children involved in crime or anti-social behaviour
- Children who are not attending school regularly or have been excluded repeatedly
- Adults or young people out of work or at risk of worklessness and financial exclusion
- Families affected by domestic violence and abuse
- Children who need help
- Family members who have mental or physical health difficulties or issues with substance misuse
Members of the Early Help team can offer information, support and advice about the range of services available through this programme and can be contacted by emailing HelpWithCaf@peterborough.gov.uk or call 01733 863649.
Multi Agency Support Group
When families and practitioners who are helping them need more support, cases can be discussed at one of our three locality-based Multi Agency Support Group panels (MASGs). These panels are made up of representatives of services across the city, who use their skills, knowledge and expertise to consider early help interventions that will meet the identified needs of a child and/or family.
Access to the panels is via a completed Early Help Assessment. Our online database, Early Help Module (previously known as ECAF) is our system for recording and supporting families through the early help process.
National Impact Study
In order to evaluate how good we are doing at supporting families who are having difficulties, the council shares personal information on families who qualify for the Connecting Families programme with a research institute called the Office of National Statistics (ONS). The ONS will compare progress made by families which have received our support with similar families who have not. The anonymized information they send back to us will allow us to improve our services. Full information on the National Impact Study and how your data is handled can be found in the Privacy Notice below.
If you have any further queries about the way in which we may use your data, please contact ConnectingFamilies@peterborough.gov.uk or call 01733 452291.