Support Groups, Information and Advice
For Families and Parents
General Advice and Support
Best Beginnings – a charity which works collaboratively to create innovative and evidence-based resources to help parents and improve child health outcomes. The charity is committed to working with child health and social care professionals to engage families from disadvantaged backgrounds to help them make positive health choices for themselves and their children.
Family Action -works to tackle some of the most complex and difficult issues facing families today – including financial hardship, mental health problems, social isolation, learning disabilities, domestic abuse, or substance misuse and alcohol problems.
Family Lives – dedicated support for parents, formerly known as Parentline Plus and formed in response to the death of Maria Colwell in 1973. Helpline 0808 800 2222.
Family Rights Group – good source of help and advice for people involved with children’s services. Call their advice line on 0808 801 0366 or email [email protected]. The FRG also have a dedicated website offering advice for young parents – visit Young Parents Advice.
There for you Advisory Service – a non profit organisation that provides support and advice to individuals and families involved with, or being investigated by their local children’s services. Helpline 0800 1123 282
your child could be taken into care. Here is what you need to know. Information pack from the government website www.justice.gov.uk.
Struggling Families Alliance – works to counter the stigma, negative presumptions and judgemental approaches to families whose children are subject to, or at risk of, state intervention by influencing how these families are perceived by the public and portrayed by the media and politicians and to enable these families to have a voice in policy and decision-making circles.
Understanding Childhood – provides leaflets that you can download to help families and child care professionals understand how to raise emotionally secure children. Emphasises the importance of the child’s early years.
Parents apart from children
UK Adoption Register -This website is intended to be the first port of call for anyone thinking about searching for or making contact with birth and adopted relatives or researching an adoption that took place in the UK.
Birth Ties – Part of the support offered by After Adoption. If you are a parent who is facing the prospect that your child may be adopted, you can ring 0800 8400 2020 for help and support in understanding what is going on. They can help arrange contact between you and your child and introduce you to other people who are going through the same experience.
Family Separation Hub – a child focussed resource, providing information and support around all aspects of divorce and family separation.
Families Need Fathers -charity chiefly concerned with the problems of maintaining a child’s relationship with both parents during and after family breakdown. Offers information, advice and support services to help parents to achieve a positive outcome for their children. A Forum and network of over 50 UK Branches also offer the pro-bono guidance of solicitors and others familiar with the family courts.
Men’s Aid – a charity providing information and advice to all parents who are seeking to maintain a meaningful and responsible relationship with their children after family break down or divorce.
Mothers Apart from Their Children – MATCH is a charity that offers support and information for mothers who are apart from their children for a variety of reasons.
Not Beyond Redemption – charity that offers free family law advice for mothers in prison or who have left prison
Issues of poverty and exclusion
ADT Fourth World -a human rights-based, anti-poverty organisation with more than 40 years’ experience of engaging with individuals and institutions to find solutions to eradicate extreme poverty in the UK. Runs a family support programme.
Family Action – a leading provider of services to disadvantaged and socially isolated families since its foundation in 1869. They work with over 45,000 children and families a year by providing practical, emotional and financial support through over 100 services based in communities across England.
Adoption org.uk – supporting adoptive families.
After Adoption – a voluntary adoption agency, working with all groups of people affected by adoption, including supporting the wider family and reuniting family members.
The Adoption Legal Centre -The team at the Adoption Legal Centre are specialists in advising both adopters and potential adopters. They can help when adopters are facing challenging problems.
Adoption Social – collection of blog posts about issues faced by adoptive families
First4Adoption – a dedicated information service for people interested in adopting a child in England. Gives impartial information about adopting and can put you in touch with adoption agencies in your area.
PAFCA – parenting advice for foster carers and adopters. Offers support to improve the psychological well-being of adopted children.
Parenting Adopted Teens – a UK based group of parents who have adopted children from the looked after system in the past 20 years. They aim to develop specialist programmes and resources for use with parents of teenage adoptees in the UK.
Grandparents plus – charity championing the role of grandparents and the wider family in children’s lives.
Grandparents Association -set up in 1987 by a group of grandparents whose grandchildren had been put into care, adopted from care or were not allowed any contact with. Their mission is to improve the lives of children by working with and for all grandparents. Call the helpline on 0845 4349585.
National Kinship Alliance for children -a nationwide network of grandparents, community members, and professionals working together to provide education and support, advocacy, and thought leadership for children, grandparents, and kinship families.
Families and prison
Action for Prisoners’ Families -works for the benefit of prisoners’ and offenders’ families by representing the views of families and those who work with them and by promoting effective work with families.
Inside Time – National newspaper for prisoners and detainees. Various pages of information for help and support organisations and networks for those in custody as well as recently released. Also information for friends and family.
Offenders Families Helpline Website – offers information and support from arrest through to release and beyond. Call the help line on 0808 808 2003.
PACT – Pact is a national charity which supports people affected by imprisonment. They provide practical and emotional support to prisoners’ children and families, and to prisoners themselves.
Prisoners’ Families and Friends Service – based in London but offering a freephone helpline for anyone, call 0808 808 3444. Offers information, advice, friendship and support to those with relatives or friends in prison.
Prison to parenthood – offers a child focused solution to reunite parents upon their release from prison with their children. Identifying recovery from addiction and family ties as core elements to reduce re-offending, the organisation promotes both parents playing active and meaningful roles in the upbringing of their children through rehabilitation, emotional support and legal advice.