30% of child and family support has been lost. Can you help make a new start?

an appeal for direct action with family members and workers in ‘co-production’

Editorial comment: I have in mind children who are vulnerable, disabled or marginalised and I make my estimate of 30% from the workers and support organisations that are gradually disappearing from Interconnections’ TAC Bulletin mailing list. This began after the 2008 banking crash and has continued at a pace through the years of austerity and the pandemic. It still continues.

What estimate would you make for your city, region or country?

I fear that in my particular field of babies and pre-school children there is not going to be a recovery. Early child and family support has always been a neglected social activity and if we are not careful it will sink out of sight.

Can local early child and family support task forces help make a new and better start? Here is my definition:

‘A local early support task force will be independent of, but in a constructive relationship with, local authorities and will work to improve the local early support system or, if there is not one already, to establish a new effective integrated early child and family support system. Membership and activities will reflect local conditions.

       Parents and other family members will be at the core alongside local practitioners who are in close contact with families and have a deep sense of the need for reform. In addition there can be people from local academic institutions, caring activists and others with campaigning experience.

       Each task force’s main work will be to build constructive dialogue with executives and managers in public services, with local politicians, press and media, colleges and universities and with other local voluntary organisations and campaign groups concerned for people of any age who have impairments. The purpose of this outreach is to make the unmet needs of children and families known and to recruit support for change.’ (See below)

This is direct action with family members and workers in ‘co-production’. Parents become a strong force for change with the support of local professionals. Interconnections will try to support and encourage people establishing a local early child and family support task force in any country.

Peter Limbrick

E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The quote above comes from Early Child and Family Support Principles and Prospects: For parents and practitioners who are impatient for change


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