Today, Thursday 9 February, Thurrock Council and its partner agencies has been signed up to the government's Family Hubs Start for Life programme, along with 74 other eligible local authorities.
Thurrock's Brighter Futures Family Hub Network will deliver responsive, high-quality support to local families with children aged 0 to 18 years-old, expectant parents and young adults with special educational needs or disabilities up to the age of 25 years-old.
Cllr Barry Johnson, Cabinet Member for Children and Education, said: "Our borough-wide Family Hubs will be welcoming areas where families can directly access information and services. Whether in-person or online, parents will be supported to help improve outcomes for their children and get a range of tailored support.
"Previously we know services have been disjointed, or hard to navigate, but Family Hubs will act as a ‘one stop shop’ to offer guidance and advice on a range of circumstances and services including: infant feeding, mental health support, health visits and parenting classes.
"Family Hubs will bring together wider wraparound services that can make a huge difference to parents who also need extra support – such as job advice, mental health support and local stop smoking services.
"We will engage with families in Thurrock and design the Family Hub Network alongside them. By continuing to speak with them and our Parent Carer Panels, together, we will be best placed to evolve services around the changing needs of our families and communities – including making sure they remain accessible and inclusive.”
Run by the government's Department of Health and Social Care and Department for Education, the £300million national programme up to 2025 is a crucial part of the government's Best Start for Life vision, and builds on the government's ambition to put strong families at the heart of communities. Go to GOV.UK: the best start for life.