Early Support is a way of working underpinned by 10 principles that aim to improve the delivery of services for disabled children, young people and their families. It enables services to coordinate their activity better and provide families with a single point of contact and continuity through Key Working.
Early Support ensures that service delivery is child and family centred. It focuses on enabling services and practitioners to work in partnership with children and their families.
The Early Support Service in Westminster offers key working support to families caring for a child aged 0 to 5 years who has a disability or complex health needs.
a) Work in collaboration with children and young people with disabilities and/or complex health needs and their families to ensure that all support is family-centred
b) Co-ordinate provision of and communication between services and ensure families are fully aware of who is involved, for what purpose and when.
c) Provide a single point of contact responsible for providing of information and facilitate access to services and support at the appropriate time.
d) Maximise early intervention, proactive practical and emotional support and provision of coherent packages of services.
e) Empower parents/carers to feel and become more involved in and in control of achieving positive outcomes for their child with a disability and/or complex needs, themselves and their family.
The aim of the Early Support Service is to ensure a consistent approach in working with parents to be and parents with children 0 – 5 years, according to shared set of key principles. These are:
- co-ordinate, streamline and add value to existing services for children with disabilities
- involve parents, grandparents and other carers in ways that build on their existing strengths;
- ensure lasting support by linking activities to services for older children;
- be culturally appropriate and sensitive to particular needs.