Stronger Families Service Covid-19 update
We are now offering our specialist mental health and wellbeing support to families by telephone and welcome any new referrals. To keep everyone safe we have temporarily paused our group activities, but instead we are posting out monthly’ Time for Me’ resource packs for our participants to enjoy at home. Touchstone is here to support the whole Stronger Families Bradford partnership at this uncertain time, and we are busy sharing useful wellbeing information, tools and resources to help both participants and staff. We are also offering our expertise to the Stronger Families Parent Participation Group, who are doing a fantastic job of running the Facebook support group.
Alongside organisations from across Leeds and Bradford we’ve been given £7 million of funding from The National Lottery Community Fund and the European Social Fund to support parents to access training, start job searching and find employment.
We realise there are lots of reasons that day to day life can make this difficult and offer support with things like health and wellbeing, reducing debt and budgeting as well as supporting the transition into work. We work closely with other organisations that offer a range of services.
It’s a voluntary programme and is available to anyone who meets the eligibility criteria.
How do I access this support?
To be eligible you must:
- Have a dependent child
- Have the right to work in the UK
- Not be in paid work
What happens when I join the programme?
You will be allocated a friendly Key Worker who will work with you for about 6 months. Your Key Worker will meet with you regularly to understand your needs, strengths and job goals. You will have access to specialists who can work with you on:
- Health and Wellbeing
- Debt issues, housing advice, budgeting and benefits advice
- Preparation for work with CV and job-searching support, opportunities for work placements and building skills
We also link in with a range of services that provide support for:
- Children with Special Education Needs
- Domestic Abuse
There are family activities to get involved in too, from farm trips to art sessions.
What progress has been made so far?
Over 700 parents have been involved in the programme so far with 120 securing a job and nearly 250 starting an education or training course. There have been exciting family art sessions at the Yorkshire Playhouse, farms trips and well-being walks. We’ve supported families with a range of needs – recovery from domestic abuse, complex housing and debt issues, school attendance and anxiety and health problems.
Parents have said:
- “Targeted help to my needs, flexible, reliable and always helpful”
- “Things are on the up and the support has been great”
- “I feel hopeful for the first time”
- “The best things were getting out into the fresh air and having some exercise, looking for signs of spring and getting to know other people.”