The Family Support Team plays a pivotal role in Suffolk’s early help system, but it is crucial to recognise that early help is an approach, not a standalone service. The new name, Family Support Team, better reflects the nature of the support provided by the team.
In addition to the team name change, we are renaming the Common Assessment Framework (CAF) to the Early Help Assessment. This change aims to position these assessments as tools for any practitioners and partners to evaluate strengths and needs within a family, rather than use the assessment as just a referral to the Family Support Team.
Accompanying this change, we have updated guidance on when a referral to the Family Support Team is appropriate. This guidance also covers how to engage in conversations about strengths and needs when concerns arise. The guidance can be found here: www.suffolk.gov.uk/children-families-and-learning/eha
We believe that by fostering a deeper understanding of when to make referrals and equipping practitioners and partners with updated guidance, we can collectively enhance outcomes for children and ensure the right agencies are involved based on the Early Help Assessment.
Your continued collaboration and expertise are invaluable in making these changes. We appreciate your ongoing commitment to families in Suffolk.