Making a referral

Southwark Social Workers

To ‘step-down’ following completion of an assessment or Child in Need (CIN) plan

To step a case down to Family Early Help for a whole family intervention, in the first instance please contact the Family Early Help duty manager on 020 7525 1922 for consultation regarding the family’s suitability for the service.

Although there are no specific criteria for stepping a family down to Family Early Help, social workers are asked to consider the following areas when deciding whether to request a step-down:

  1. Have your reviewed the case with reference to the Multi-Agency threshold document? Are you satisfied that work with the family at Tier 2 is safe and appropriate?
  2. Are there clearly identified outcomes and goals to work toward rather than general requests for support or monitoring?
  3. Is there evidence that there is agreement and buy-in from the family and the professional network for FEH to take over the lead professional role?
  4. Are there any significant tasks outstanding that need to be completed prior to the step-down?

If it's agreed that that a step-down is appropriate, please complete the Mosaic step-down consultation form which is generated from your assessment, initial CIN plan or CIN network review, providing as much information as possible to assist in allocation. Please note that the referring social worker must convene a step-down Team Around the Family (TAF) meeting prior to closing the case.

Referrals for other Family Early Help Services

The services listed below can be accessed irrespective of whether a family is remaining open to Children’s Social Care.

Please complete the Mosaic Family Early Help Internal Social Care Referral form in the Start menu in Mosaic for access to these services:

  • evidence based-parenting programmes for children of all ages
  • one to one parenting interventions (for families subject to Child Protection Plans or in the Public Law Outline Process)
  • Children and Family Centres
  • St Giles Children and Families Service

Do I need consent?

You will need consent from the parent or carer for all referrals. This should include discussing your worries with them in advance and being clear about the service Family Early Help provides. 

What happens next?

Once received, your referral will be discussed at the weekly Family Early Help allocations meeting. You will be informed of the decision agreed at the meeting, including which services have been allocated to the family.  If the referral is not accepted, you will be informed of the reason why and if any alternative services have been recommended.

Who can I talk to about a family?

If you're unsure whether a family is suitable for any Family Early Help service, contact the Family Early Help duty manager on 020 7525 1922 for advice and guidance.

Page last updated: 20 January 2021

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