Everyone is involved in the delivery of Early Help, including, communities, voluntary groups, police, GPs, schools, health and targeted support services. Without this shared, cross-sector responsibility – whether public, private, voluntary or community – we run the risk of missing opportunities to get help to children and families quickly.
Early Help means providing support as soon as the problem emerges, from the early years in a child’s life and right through to their teenage years (or up to 25 years in the case of young people with Special Education Needs and Disabilities). Early Help is effective in preventing issues and problems becoming acute, chronic and costly to the child, young person, the family and the wider community. Reducing the need for intrusive and more expensive statutory services is also key to help sustainably manage resources across all partner agencies. Early Help requires a whole-family approach, involving both children’s and adult services.
Early Help is therefore a collaborative approach, not a service.
The Sandwell Early Help for Children and Families Strategy 2022 - 2024 here.