With all areas of the UK now experiencing increased restrictions, local Home-Starts are ensuring that families continue to receive support during this challenging time.

Drawing on experiences learned from the previous restrictions in 2020, each local Home-Start is offering support based on its staff, volunteer and remote-working capacity. All Home-Starts are following strict government guidelines.

The majority of one-to-one support has moved to regular phone or video calls and many Home-Starts are looking for more volunteers to come forward as digital befrienders. Some Home-Starts are successfully running online group activities or have created online communities through platforms such as Facebook.

While some Home-Starts are able to offer face to face support to the most vulnerable families, to minimise risk services are limited to anything considered essential work and are only taking place following careful risk assessment. However, volunteers may be still be able to meet a family member for a walk outdoors, or to carry out a doorstep drop provided social distancing is maintained at all times.

The absence of practical and emotional support for families can have a huge impact, and we know that our support can provide a critical lifeline to isolated and vulnerable families. Home-Start prides itself on the unique offer of volunteers providing one to one home visiting support for families and children. We look forward to a time when we will be able to resume our normal services.

Our website has a wide selection of useful resources to support families during Covid-19 including helping children manage their emotions and advice for teens.

Many local Home-Starts are also sharing valuable resources on their social media pages.

Families and volunteers should contact their local Home-Start for details of the support that they are able to offer.