About the Family Support Service
The Family Support Service provides a wide range of support to children, young people and families in Buckinghamshire. This includes information, advice and guidance through the Family Information Service, open access sessions and health services for early years children and parents/carers at a network of 16 Family Centres across the county, which also offer a range of support for parents with children aged up to 19 years (or up to 25 years for young people with special educational needs and disabilities). You can drop in anytime during the week at our three Family Centre Plus sites. All activities at Family Centres are free for children, young people and families.
The Service is there for the whole family, not just children but for parents and young people too. Families are able to refer themselves to the service or may be supported by a school, health or other professionals who will make a referral on their behalf.
The service can provide support to families and individuals who are facing more complex challenges, through group work or support from a dedicated Family Worker. The Family Support Service does not provide whole-family support when a child or young person is open to statutory Children’s Services, but if specific support is needed (for example parenting, one to one youth support or early years support at family centre sessions), you can make this request for support.
The Service has been carefully designed to provide better, more targeted support for vulnerable families who face a range of issues or more complex challenges. The service provides one-to-one support to families and individuals in a setting that is most comfortable to them, like their home, a local community setting or somewhere else.
The Early Help Strategy for Buckinghamshire 2019 to 2022 (PDF/A 5.6KB) details the context, as well as the visions, aims and approaches that underpin the Family Support Service.
The Family Support Service can work with families, children or young people who need help because they are:
- Excluded from school or having difficulties engaging with education
- Currently or at risk of becoming NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training)
- Affected by domestic abuse or parental conflict
- Demonstrating risk-taking behaviour
- Impacted by the consequences of substance misuse
- Affected by poor mental health
- Impacted by poor attachments or relationships within the family
- Having difficulty parenting in a consistent way
- Impacted by financial problems and debt
- Having difficulty maintaining boundaries and expectations within the home
- Involved with the criminal justice system
- Young carers
- Vulnerable to exploitation
- In a home environment impacting on the health and well-being of a child
The Family Support Service offer a number opportunities to access help within groups for:
- Parenting support
- Early Years developmental issues
- Youth work programmes
- Support for those affected by domestic abuse
- Family Learning
If you have immediate concerns about the safety and wellbeing of a child, please contact First Response on 01296 383962 (or 0800 999 7677 out of hours). Call the Police on 999 if there is an immediate risk.
You can find out more about safeguarding young people on the Buckinghamshire Safeguarding Children Board website.
Below are the Family Centres Facebook pages or groups for you to keep up-to-date with information or to communicate with centre staff. However. please note that not all pages are overseen currently by centre staff. If you have an urgent question or query please call the centre directly.