Early HelpLast Updated 06/02/2020
In Westminster we use the term early help to refer to any extra support you may need for your family. This can range from providing information, to support in your home or recommending courses that might be helpful for you. You might already be using some of these services. Many organisations across Westminster provide early help and we try to work together to make it as easy as possible for you to get the right support, at the right time in the right place.
You can visit our online directory where you will find contact details of a wide range of agencies who offer information, advice and support.
If you feel you need some extra support you can gain further information about the Early Help service by visiting your local Family Hub or children's centre. If you need support from a range of different services, one of our family navigators may meet with you to plan this out and make sure you get the help you need.
We’re improving the support you and your family receive in Westminster. As part of this, we are creating three Family Hubs offering more support and advice that now includes families with children up to 19 years of age.
The Family Hub means the professionals who support you working together – including health visitors, school nurses, outreach teams, Early Help workers, social workers and local organisations.
The first Family Hub opened at the Bessborough Centre in Pimlico in the summer of 2018:
Bessborough Family Hub, 1 Bessborough Street, SW1V 2JD.
Tel: 020 7641 5923 / Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Opening hours are from 9am to 5pm.
Next year, there are plans to open hubs at Children’s Centre sites at the Portman Centre and Queens Park Children’s Centre. In preparation for this, the Portman Early Childhood Centre has moved out of its premises to allow renovation work to take place. Whilst this work is carried out their services will be offered nearby at 4 Lilestone Street, NW8 8SU. All the Children’s Centre telephone numbers have stayed the same. Please get in touch if you would like to know more about what is on offer.
If you are a parent, carer or professional and have immediate concerns about the safety of a child or young person you should get in contact straight away by calling the Access to Children's Services team on 020 7641 4000 9am–5pm weekdays or outside of these times the Emergency Duty Team on 020 7641 2388. Emergency Duty Team on 020 7641 2388.
In Westminster professionals should use The Multi Agency Assessment and Referral Form (MAARF) to make a referral to Early Help. If you are using this form for the first time please register via this link This is the form you need to complete if you are a professional and need to make a referral to Family Services (either social care that is not an emergency, or targeted early help).
As outlined in our Early Help Strategy 2019–2022, From Surviving to Thriving, we offer a range of training courses for all Early Help staff working in Westminster.
Go to the 'Downloads' section to the left of this page to find a copy of the brochure detailing the courses on offer.
Please ensure you include the name of your organisation when emailing to book as we may need to verify that you are from one of our approved partners before offering you a place. If the course you are interested in doesn't have dates listed yet please email to enquire. All course venues will be in the Westminster area, exact details will be confirmed on booking.