Family Hubs coming to Tameside to help give children the best start in life

Date Released - 26/10/2022

FAMILY Hubs are to be established in Tameside to bring together more accessible and better connected children’s services.

Tameside Council has been awarded funding from the Family Hubs and Best Start for Life Fund with the Department for Education confirming an allocation of £3,295,000 over three years to work with partners to establish Family Hubs across the area.

On Wednesday (26 Oct), the Council’s Cabinet approved a report setting out how the hubs will be developed.

Family hubs are a valuable part of the Council’s aim to place services within communities to improve delivery and outcomes. They bring existing family-help services together to improve access and connections between families, professionals, services, and providers, as well as putting relationships at the heart of family help. They can include hub buildings and virtual offers and are for families with children of all ages, from 0 to 19 or up to 25 with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), with a great Start for Life offer at their core.

A scoping exercise is underway in Tameside to identify buildings available across the borough. A public consultation is intended to inform and formalise proposals.

The investment includes funding for essential services in the crucial ‘Start for Life’ period from conception to age two, and services which support parents to care for and interact with their children.

Since 2017, the Early Help Offer in Tameside has grown significantly, with the development of an Early Help Access Point, better Early Help Assessment tools, ‘Team Around’ approaches, and Early Help Panels with joint decision-making. Family Hubs are a key development to improve the Early Help offer for children and families in Tameside further.

Tameside Council’s Deputy Leader Councillor Bill Fairfoull, who has responsibility for Children and Families, said: “I fully welcome the Family Hubs and Best Start for Life Programme and funding allocation, which aligns with our key policy of supporting the most vulnerable families in our community.

“This programme will support our priority to give our children the very best start in life where they are ready to learn and encouraged to thrive and develop. It will also help develop supportive networks to keep families resilient in order to protect our young people and help them flourish.”

Key partners in the programme include Tameside and Glossop Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust, Tameside and Glossop Pennine Care, Action Together, schools, Active Tameside, libraries, Greater Manchester Police and HomeStart.

A Tameside Family Hubs Steering Group has been established to provide action-focused leadership and oversight.