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£12m Family Hubs Transformation Fund announced

Children’s minister Will Quince announced a £12 million family hubs Transformation Fund to support around 12 local authorities in England to open family hubs.

Mr Quince outlined why the government is championing the family hubs model at the National Centre for Family Hubs, which will provide expert advice and guidance and work with local authorities to champion the family hub approach.

“Family hubs bring together services to support families from conception all the way up to young people of 19 – or up to 25 for special educational needs – and so can respond to the needs of the whole family. They create a clear access point, and a relationship with services that does not end as children grow older,” said Mr Quince.

“Family hubs allow for both physical and virtual services to be brought under one banner, around which communications and outreach can be built, building awareness and trust among families. We have seen the value of online services and access points, and these are integral to the family hub model; but we know that access to face-to-face services remain as crucial as ever, and so the family hub building will remain at the heart of family help,” he added.

The £12m fund will enable the government to learn more about the process of local transformation, build our evidence base, and create valuable resources and learning for those local authorities who follow. Start for Life will be a key element of each of these projects.

The government has also published Transformation Fund application guidance and the fund is open to applications from local authorities.

The children’s minister highlighted that the chancellor announced a significant £500 million package for families, including a £300 million package to transform services for parents and babies, carers and children in half of the local authorities across England.

This includes funding to create a family hub network for local authorities to publish their Start for Life offer, support for breast feeding, parent-infant relationships and parenting programmes and also includes a smaller number of pilots to trial and evaluate innovative workforce models needed to support babies and families.

“Let me finish by saying that today’s event and the launch of our first £12 million Family Hubs Transformation Fund is very much the beginning of the conversation on family hubs. We know there is much more to do, to learn, and to build, working with you all. What we have published today is very far from the last word, in fact it is quite the opposite – and we want to hear from you, and work with you to make sure that we realise the potential of family hubs. It is a hugely exciting time,” concluded Mr Quince.

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