Stockport Family is underpinned by restorative practice, helping families to deal with conflict and challenge, and repair relationships. It is an integrated service for children and families delivered through multi-agency, co-located, locality based teams with access to a range of specialist borough-wide services.
To deliver this, Stockport have structured their early help, health and social care workforce around three locality areas and the early help offer has been designed around the local school system, known as ‘the team around’ approach. This approach involves bringing a dedicated early help workforce into school settings in order to improve coordinated and accessible support to struggling families at an early stage, manage concerns locally and reduce referrals.
This model is continuing to develop in Stockport, to enhance pre-pregnancy and early years services. The Stockport Family model is now being scaled and spread across Greater Manchester.
The DfE-funded independent evaluation published in 2017 found that:
- Stockport Family has resulted in positive outcomes such as improved wellbeing of families and children, improved school readiness, better educational and health outcomes and, increased professional satisfaction and staff morale, and social care involvement.
- Co-location and restructuring of teams around 3 localities in Stockport resulted in improved communication and cooperation, allowing professionals and families to draw upon the right intervention, specialist knowledge and skills when needed.
- Projected cost savings to Stockport Family model’s looked after children budget in 2016/17 were £1.2 million.