Think Family

Think Family key services

Ealing is working towards actively supporting and embedding the Think Family approach across all services. Examples of where we are already delivering services using this approach include:

Ealing Children’s Integrated Response Service (‘Triage’): This service, which is under ongoing development, acts as a single point of referral for all the borough’s vulnerable children and families; it includes a gateway process to receive referrals, a multi-agency assessment process, and information-sharing protocols to support every assessment.

Think Family Plus: The establishment of this programme has involved the piloting of a range of new approaches to working with whole families with multiple needs, as well as new and coordinated ways of planning, working and reporting in existing services.

Employment support: There are a wide range of services dedicated to helping individuals find work and training opportunities in Ealing including four local Work Clubs that can assist on job searching and making applications. Adult Learning can also help to find relevant training opportunities to improve qualifications and CVs. Employment support for the whole family is also available through the European Social Fund (ESF).

‘Think Family' training courses: This innovative training and development programme for managers and practitioners in adult and children’s services, and increasingly for those in partner agencies, is designed to cement the Think Family approach in the actions of frontline workers and managers. Joint training approaches are increasingly becoming the norm for social care training with a wide range of courses available to staff from a variety of backgrounds. 

Helping Families Programme (HFP): This pilot scheme is currently in development as an approach to delivering intensive social care; 12 staff from Children in Need (CIN) teams are being trained to work with families with children at the age of care, at least one of which is of primary school age.

Youth Justice Service 'Triage': Intervening with young people and their families at the point of arrest, this triage process offers a range of youth offending projects including: motivational interviewing; learning mentors; Peace of Me programme; restorative justice; Intensive Supervision and Surveillance (ISS); Integrated Resettlement Support (IRS); Gang mediation and outreach support; and the Girls, Gangs and Consequences programme. YOS workers have been trained in the ‘Strengthening Families Strengthening Communities’ positive parenting programme, ‘Triple P’ and Family Group Conferencing, and the YOS also has a qualified parenting coordinator to provide family support.

Extended schools: This service works with primary schools to help them to support families.

Adult social care: Offering support to those people assessed as having critical or substantial care needs, these services focus on improving the independence, health and well-being of individuals in a personalised way. For more information please see the information and resource directory for adult social care customers in Ealing.

Family Nurse Partnership: This programme offers intensive home visit support to young mothers (aged under 20) from pregnancy to the time a child is two years old. It aims to help the most vulnerable young parents in the borough referred by social care and health professionals.

Family Intervention Programme (FIP): Focusing on independence and exit strategies, this project provides intensive one-to-one support, coordination of services and interventions for families with five or more complex needs. It originally began with an emphasis on youth crime and housing, but is now being significantly expanded and refocused as part of the Think Family Plus approach.

Children’s centres: There are 27 centres in the borough that reached over 20,000 children and parents in 2010/2011; this included 361 placements for children in need and assisted access to places for 430 disadvantaged two-year-olds.

Supportive Action for Families in Ealing (SAFE): This multi-agency service targets children and young people identified as having additional needs that are unlikely to be met through universal services, and also works with families experiencing difficulties not meeting social care thresholds. It encourages self-referral and concentrates on early intervention and preventative work with families to stop any escalation to social care.

Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS): There is strong local VCS support for families in Ealing, including organisations like Family Lives, which provides local advice and peer support to families, and Home Start Ealing, which helps to increase the confidence and independence of families with young children.

Young Carers Charter: Plans are in place to get local services – both adult and children’s – to sign up to and implement a Young Carers Charter. Tools are being developed for service providers so that they are better equipped to identify and give appropriate support to young carers.

Housing: For council tenants and those living in privately rented property or their own home, and have a mortgage, there is a wide range of information and help about housing in the borough. There is also advice for anyone who is concerned about becoming homeless, and also guidance for people living in sheltered accommodation.

Welfare benefits: The government is introducing a wide range of changes to the social security benefits system over the next few years and details on how these changes might impact families can be found on the welfare benefit pages.

Children's services: The family services directory provides information on childcare and family services in the borough of Ealing for children, young people, parents and practitioners.

Mental health: for information regarding support services for people experiencing mental health difficulties and what to do when a situation requiees urgent action.

Learning disabilities: there is further information available regarding services to support adults with learning disabilities.