Update From The Early Help Team

You may have heard that there have been a few changes to Early Help and Safeguarding in Shropshire. The team wanted to keep you posted on these changes and to also update you on some resources, which they hope you will find useful.

Compass and Initial Contact Team
• Staff from Compass and the Initial Contact Team are now co-located in one team at Mount McKinley. This move will mean the two teams can now work more closely together. It will ensure better co-ordination and communication between the two teams.

• The move will also improve work flows from Early Help to Safeguarding and from Safeguarding to Early Help, making sure that children and families are accessing the right service at the right time.
Telephone Numbers

• The telephone numbers have not changed.

• If you are concerned about a child’s welfare or want to make a child protection referral you still call 03456 789 021

• To have a consultation with an Early Help Social Worker or a Primary Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) worker you still call 03456 789 021

Early Help Social Workers

• The team increased the number of Early Help Social Workers available. There are now six full time equivalents, with two on duty every day for a consultation. You can talk to them about cases you may be stuck with, discuss your thoughts about possible services that may help and seek guidance on the management of risk or the most appropriate pathways and referrals.

CAMHS Consultations

• The CAMHS consultation service has developed over the past twelve months and is frequently used by many agencies. It provides support and guidance to all professionals working with children and young people who have mental health difficulties.

• In addition, if a referral to Specialist CAMHS is being considered, the consultation will help inform if CAMHS is the most appropriate service to meet the child’s needs and what other interventions could be beneficial. It can also help identify what information is required to support the referral.

• To help improve efficiency and the availability of consultations a booking system is being introduced. This will help ensure that a CAMHS professional is available at a pre-arranged time which is convenient to all those requiring consultation.

• If you would like to arrange a consultation please telephone 0345 678 9021. Your call will be answered by trained advisers at the First Point of Contact. You will need to request a CAMHS Primary Mental Health Consultation. The advisor will attempt to transfer your call but if no one is available at that time you will able to book an alternative consultation timeslot.

Early Help Panel

•The team have changed the Early Help Panel option and will soon be bringing panel meetings into localities. This will tie in with our developing work around phase two of the troubled families programme (known as Family Solutions in Shropshire). We’ll keep you updated on these changes in future updates.

• In the interim and so there is no delay, you can book a consultation with an Early Help Social Worker to talk through any cases you would have previously sent to panel.

Early Help Network Meetings

• The summer term’s network meetings were held recently and proved to be very popular. These session offer Multi-agency support for professionals to become familiar and confident using Early Help tools and processes. The recent sessions focused on plans and reviews. There will be another round of meetings in the autumn term and we’ll keep you posted on the theme of these and how to book.

New Address

• The move means that you will now need to send any Early Help assessments and referrals to the new address:-
Mt McKinley
Anchorage Avenue
Shrewsbury Business Park

• We’ve already updated the Early Help paperwork on the Early Help website. You can access the Early Help Forms here.

Family Information Service

• Shropshire Family Information Service (FIS) is now the first point of contact for all women wanting to book onto a Domestic Abuse group – such as the Freedom Programme. The number women need to call is 01743 250465.

• The Family Information Service offers free and impartial information, advice and support to parents and carers of children and young people aged 0-19yrs. The service is also available to professionals working with families and has information on many local and national universal and specialist support services which can help you when completing Early Help plans.

Local Offer for Parents of children with SEND

• From September 2014, local authorities have been obliged to publish a Local Offer, setting out in one place information and provision they expect to be available across education, health and social care for children and young people in their area who have SEN or are disabled, including those who do not have education, health, and care (EHC) plans. The Local Offer for Shropshire has a wealth of information for parents – and also for professionals supporting parents. You can visit the Local Offer website at http://shropshire.gov.uk/local-offer/ or email the Local Offer Co-ordinator Zara Bowen on LocalOffer@shropshire.gov.uk to find out more or if your service is listed.

Come and Visit

• You are always welcome to visit Mount McKinley to understand more about how work flows and to meet the teams. Email Jeanette Hill, the Compass Operations Manager, on Jeanette.Hill@shropshire.gov.uk to arrange a suitable time

Getting communication right

• Good communication is important to the team and they welcome your comments and feedback on what works for you. Do you like the Early Help newsletters? What do you think of the Early Help Website? Do the Early Help Network meetings work for you? What else could we try to get messages out to you? If you want to share your thoughts then please email kate.bentham@shropshire.gov.uk

Useful Resources

Updated Working Together to Safeguard Children March 2015

Updated What to do if you are worried that a child is being abused

New Information Sharing: Advice for Practitioners Providing Safeguarding Services

New Early Help: Whose Responsibility?

New NSPCC Online Safety Campaign – Share Aware

Reminder Multi-agency Guidance on Threshold Criteria to help support Children, Young People and their Families in Shropshire

Reminder Effectiveness of Early Help Report April 2014 – December 2014

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