29th September 2020
Home-Start prides itself on the unique offer of volunteers providing one-to-one home visiting support for families and children. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak, Home-Starts have been unable to offer this face-to-face support in people’s homes.
Home-Starts acted quickly to adapt services to provide support to families over the past six months – whether that is over the phone, video calls, or group chats. Home-Starts have also provided thousands of families with deliveries of essential supplies, doorstep visits and activity packs to keep children entertained.
However, there will be occasions where digital methods may not have been enough to engage families. There may be concerns about the mental health, wellbeing or isolation of a parent that warrant different approaches. There may be vulnerabilities or concerns in the household that a physical meeting might help identify.
As restrictions are lifted it is becoming possible to restart those face-to-face visits, in a safe and secure way for families and volunteers.
Home-Start UK has been working with local Home-Starts, national directors and our insurers and have now released guidance to enable local Home-Starts to safely return to face-to-face services if they wish to.
The decision to re-initiate any face-to-face family support services (whether home visiting or group work) remains one that must be taken by each individual Home-Start, and families and volunteers should contact their local Home-Start for details of the support that they are able to offer.
Whether it is face-to-face or remote Home-Starts are all committed to making sure families are supported through the challenges they face.