At times of great personal hardship, many of us would turn to our relatives and friends for guidance and a helping hand. What would you do if you and your family didn’t have this choice?

For families who don’t have strong family connections or who have recently moved away from family in another part of the country, the caring presence of relatives and friends simply isn’t there for them.

Safe Families for Children is a brand new approach to this problem which uses trained volunteers to offer simple but really innovative solutions for families in need. It represents Nottingham City Council’s commitment to Early Intervention, proactively supporting families at their time of need to reduce the number of children ending up in care.

Nottingham City Council is proud to be the first local authority in the East Midlands to commission Safe Families for Children and pioneer new ways of working together to support families in the city. Nottingham City Council’s roll out of the scheme will soon be followed by Safe Families for Children project will be available across the East Midlands.

Safe Families for Children, which is supported in the UK by the Vardy Foundation will use volunteers, with the support of a small team of paid staff to target the families in Nottingham who are most in need. Councillor David Mellen, Portfolio Holder for Early Intervention and Early Years said,

“Safe Families for Children is an important early intervention scheme which will provide help for families in desperate need, prevent child neglect and abuse and reduce the number of children entering the care system. When faced with unforeseen challenges and stress in our lives, many of us take for granted that our families or friends will rally round us to help but for many vulnerable families the support just isn’t there. A family crisis can happen at any time and the effects on the children of an isolated family can be devastating.”

A launch event took place on 25 Sept 2015 in the Community Rooms at the Bulwell Riverside Centre, Nottingham to celebrate Nottingham City Council’s involvement with Safe Families for Children.

The informal get together was attended by key people involved in the scheme who met to discuss their experiences so far, mark the occasion and share what it means for people in Nottingham and the East Midlands.