This week in Parliament Lucy Allan MP met with Anne Longfield OBE, Children’s Commissioner for England to discuss the needs of vulnerable children and families in Telford and commit to championing Family Hubs locally and nationally.
Family Hubs are one-stop shops offering integrated support and specialist help to parents, couples and children. This could include relationships counselling and mental health services, child care, early years health care and employment support - supplementing, not supplanting vital public services in conjunction with charities and local businesses. Family Hubs bring together statutory and voluntary approaches to tackling family breakdown, intergenerational poverty and poor outcomes for children.
Lucy Allan MP said: “the roll out of Family Hubs is the key priority of our manifesto pledge to help vulnerable families. The Family Hubs developing across the UK, (such as in Newcastle, Rochdale, Doncaster, Westminster, Chelmsford and the Isle of Wight), are key to identifying families with complex needs as early as possible, no matter which service they come into contact with; preventing family breakdown; preventing children from going into care and from entering the criminal justice system; helping parents to gain employment; providing access to frontline mental health support to reduce referrals to higher level, more costly intervention – and much more.
I want to ensure my constituency is benefiting from the significant outcomes of Family Hubs: children and young people feeling safer; families being helped to improve parenting and children’s behaviour; better emotional wellbeing of mothers and children in the perinatal period and beyond; good lifestyle choices; more resilient families who can respond well to crises and cope with shocks; young people having strong attachment to at least one adult; and people being connected to and involved positively in their local community.”
Anne Longfield OBE Children’s Commissioner said: “There is a great potential to provide a national network of Family Hubs, concentrated in areas of disadvantage, that bring services and support together to offer children and their families the help they need to flourish. We need to see them at the heart of Government’s early years strategy, troubled families work and children’s services reform – helping children and families and making the most of services and funding on the ground. I was pleased to see so many parliamentarians supporting this vision today.”