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Parenting Support (pdf) - Families Link International

Parenting Support (pdf) - Families Link International

• Local authorities

• Local authorities appear to have onlylimited awareness of the complete rangeof services being provided. Many localauthorities were, however, in the earlystages of trying to map the full range ofprovision available within their local areas.“We are beginning to put a family supportstrategy in place, in partnership with thevoluntary sector. The current marketstructure doesn’t really make sense andthe different sectors are not well linkedtogether. The market is underdevelopedand many projects are not sustainable.”Senior Joint Planning andCommissioning Manager• Significant variation appeared to existbetween local authorities in thesophistication of commissioning processes.• Provision was focused mainly on remedialrather than preventative interventions.• Some users of universal services areunder-represented – in particular fathersand black and minority ethnic groups.“Men think “Well, this service isn’t for me”so basically they don’t have very highexpectations of it. Wherever a service doesengage fathers, they find that they areenthusiastic recipients of the service.Most men, if you engage with them aboutparenting, will be so surprised thatanyone is talking to them that they aregrateful for anything.”National Voluntary Organisation• There appeared to be little monitoring ofthe quality of many support services andfew quality standards. 3 In addition, therewere significant challenges associatedwith appropriately and adequatelydefining what high quality outcomesshould ‘look like’. The accreditation andtraining of providers and practitionersdelivering parental and family supportservices also appeared variable.• Funding for parental and family supportservices appeared highly fragmented.This fragmentation of funding makescoherent, co-ordinated planning anddelivery of services extremely challenging.Funding was also said to be insufficientand insecure in the long and short term.3 It should be noted, however, that since the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 introduced a role for youth offending teams in delivering parenting interventions, thisdelivery has been subject to effective practice guidelines set and monitored by the Youth Justice Board10 PARENTING SUPPORT GUIDANCE FOR LOCAL AUTHORITIES IN ENGLAND

“There is a cohort of young people whoexperience clusters of issues aroundeducation, youth offending, social andfamily problems etc. There is thereforea need to co-ordinate the activities ofa wide range of services – Sure Start,Behaviour Support in Schools, YouthOffending Services, and preventativework driven by Social Services. There isa need to look across these areas to seewhat budget or resources can be freedup to extend the range and scale ofpreventative service provision. Thedialogue between these different playershistorically left a lot to be desired.”Parenting Co-ordinator,Youth Offending Team• The report also highlighted that somelocal authorities thought it would behelpful to have access to a database ofinformation about effective parentingprogrammes, guidance on commissioningparenting support and some examplesof good practice on how local authoritieshave developed co-ordinated serviceprovision.11

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