Early Help means taking action to support a child, young person or their family early in the life of a problem, as soon as it emerges. It can be required at any stage in a child’s life from pre-birth to adulthood, and applies to any problem or need that the family cannot deal with or meet on their own. It also applies to all children and young people, with any form of need.
Early Help requires that agencies should work together as soon as a problem emerges or a need is identified to ensure the child gets the right response, and the right services, from the right people at the right time. Our aim is to meet need early and avoid a problem escalating or the need increasing.
Early Help is provided to prevent or reduce the need for specialist interventions unless they are absolutely the correct response to meet the need and resolve the problem.
Early Help can be provided in the most complex of circumstances as well as the simplest. Early help means responding promptly if a child is at immediate risk of harm (or has other significant or complex needs) as much as it means responding to a need which only requires advice or guidance.
Any child may benefit from early help, but all Melton staff are particularly alert to the potential need for early help for a child who:
▪ is disabled and has specific additional needs
▪ has special educational needs (whether or not they have a statutory Education, Health and Care Plan)
▪ is a young carer
▪ is showing signs of being drawn in to antisocial or criminal behaviour, including gang involvement and association with organised crime groups
▪ is frequently missing/goes missing from care or from home
▪ is at risk of modern slavery, trafficking or exploitation
▪ is at risk of being radicalised or exploited
▪ is in a family circumstance presenting challenges for the child, such as drug and alcohol misuse, adult mental health issues or domestic abuse
▪ is misusing drugs or alcohol themselves
▪ has returned home to their family from care
▪ is a privately fostered child
Our Early Help Offer includes:
- Nurture Interventions
- Thrive support programme
- Young Carer’s Group
- Breakfast Club
- Breakfast Reading Club
- Lunchtime Play Leaders
- Induction sessions for children starting Reception class
- The school’s nursing team
- Signs of Safety toolkit
- In house safeguarding protocols
- External agency support (Behaviour support, Bereavement Counselling, Child Specific Interventions, FNM, CAF, FSP)
- Bespoke learning interventions
- Speech and Language Therapy
- Parent Information Sessions