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Early help and prevention teams

Our teams are based within each district locality in Norfolk. They link closely with early help hubs, to support children, families and professionals.

Community and partnership team 

This team consists of:

  • Head of community and partnerships
  • Partner and community focus managers
  • Partner focus officers
  • Community focus officers
  • Senior pathway advisors
  • Pathway advisors

Head of community and partnerships

  • Senior manager lead across a nominated district. Leading multi-disciplinary teams to ensure early intervention and preventative services are provided to children, young people and their families which promote inclusion in the community
  • Strategic Children’s Services lead, working with key partners to further enhance and develop locality early help hub arrangements that improve outcomes for children and families

Partner and community focus managers

  • Line manage a locality team of workers to ensure there is adequate and accessible universal services for children and their families
  • Have a robust understanding of local needs and priorities
  • Manage the effective responses to contacts received through the CADS front door that need a coordinated multi-agency response that do not require Social Work Assessment or intervention from a Family Support Practitioner
  • Use high quality oversight and decision making applying the Norfolk Threshold Guide
  • Ensure Family Support Processes are effective, robust and of high quality to improve outcomes for children and their families
  • Develop and lead on training, processes and practice to both internal and external staff

Community focus officers

  • Work with local organisations and individuals, to help them build capacity and resilience in communities for children and families
  • Enable local organisations and individuals to have access to information, which supports their work with children and families
  • Enable local organisations and individuals to work together via forums and collaborations

You can contact community focus officers via local early help hubs.

You can also contact them to obtain newsletters and information on networks, relevant to working with children and families in your local areas.

Partner focus officers

  • Support professionals working with children and families, in initiating and coordinating the family support process (FSP). This is done through training, coaching and consultation support
  • Work across local early help hubs to support families, so they can access support from local services and communities 

The partner and community focus team does not offer a front line service. They do not work directly with families. However, they are happy to offer advice, guidance and signposting, to organisations who may be supportive to the family’s needs. Support includes:

  • Information, advice and guidance on multi-agency working to professionals
  • Training and development on the Signs of Safety model, and networks for professionals
  • Individual support to professionals who are working with children, young people and their families 

Depending on your training and experience with the family support process, the team can offer telephone or face-to-face support. They can discuss:

  • Completing assessments and delivery plans
  • Support to role model meetings using the Signs of Safety model
  • Queries over the process and procedures of the family support process 

We ask that all professionals attend free family support process training.

You can request support from a partner focus officer support via the request for support form.

The team is contactable via local early help hubs.

Senior pathway advisor

  • Support the pathway advisors with decision making regarding the threshold of cases and exploring where universal services and the community can play a role in supporting a family or team around that family
  • Provide quality assurance advice and practice guidance, co-working, mentoring, and modelling of best practice to pathway advisors to ensure best practice and standards

Pathway advisor

  • Gain further information from families and partners when a referral has been made to CADS but does not require social care intervention to ensure the right support is put in place for children and families
  • Provide information to families and partner agencies on appropriate services available and make referrals to these services if required
  • Provide partners with information and guidance on the Family Network Approach and the Family Support Process 


Early Childhood and Family Service (ECFS)

Norfolk’s Early Childhood and Family Service is for all parents and carers with children aged 0-5 years-old. How and where families get support will depend on what they need.

All families can:

  • Access information, advice and support online and by telephone
  • Access groups held in the community. For example, at libraries, community buildings and village halls

If a family needs some extra support, you can refer to the ECFS for Tier 2:

  • One-to-one support
  • Targeted group support. For example, Solihull, circle of security or baby massage
  • Additional support as part of an existing support plan


Family support

Family Focus managers and family practitioners, offer targeted support to children and families, where children are at risk of becoming children in need (Section 17).

The team of family focus practitioners are located across Norfolk.

The team will:

  • Use the family support process (FSP) framework and Signs of Safety model, to work alongside children, families and their network, when families have more significant and complex worries than those supported within universal services
  • Help to prevent these needs and worries escalating, so families do not need support from higher level services such as social work teams
  • Provide support with undertaking certain additional assessments. For example, supporting young carers with an assessment on parenting for disabled parents

Referrals for the family focus team should be made via the Children’s Advice and Duty Service (CADS).

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