All families need support from time to time to help their babies and children thrive. Family Hubs aim to give every family the support they need when they need it, providing the necessary tools and advice so they can look after their children’s wellbeing.
Croydon launched their first of three Family Hubs in January at Woodlands Children’s Centre and showcased the support by local services that families in the borough could receive.
Family Hubs are designed to make it easier for families to get easy access to health and education information, advice, and support to improve the health and wellbeing of families, from pregnancy to young people aged 19 years (25 years for those with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND).
The ‘Start for Life’ offer is part of the Family Hubs programme and will provide support for families during pregnancy and for the first 2 years of a baby’s life.
Family Hubs will also encourage services to work together more efficiently, enhancing services by providing more joined up care. Families will have better access to wider support, helping to reduce health inequalities which are unfair and avoidable differences in our health.
The Family Hub is a safe and welcoming place for parents/carers and children to be able to access support from a variety of different services under one roof – like a ‘one stop shop’ and parents and carers will be encouraged to be part of the shaping and co-design of services so that they are getting the right help, at the right time, in a way that they want to receive it.Lois Brooker, Family Hub Participation and Engagement Manager
The development of Family Hubs also emphasises the importance of parent carer panels for informing the design of services. Through these monthly meetings parents and carers can share feedback based on their lived experiences and influence the improvement of services.
The Family Hubs programme is jointly led by the Department for Education (DfE) and Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) and helps meet commitments in The best start for life: a vision for the 1,001 critical days, published as government policy in March 2021.
Two more Family Hubs will launch in Croydon by March 2025. Children’s centre services will still be delivered at the Croydon Family Hub.
Organisations involved in the Family Hub
- South West London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust
- Croydon Best Start
- Croydon Council
- Croydon Health Services NHS Trust
- Simply Connect Croydon
Organisations involved in the launch
- Croydon Maternity Services
- Health visiting/School nursing service
- Early help – Family Solutions Service
- Job Centre plus
- Homestart Croydon
- Croydon Healthy Homes
- Youth Engagement Support – YES
- Oral health Team – Kings College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
- Parental and Infant Relationship Service (PAIRS)
- NHS roving immunisation team
- Empowering Parents Empowering Communities (EPEC)