Referral Information

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Information on how to make a referral
Any family with at least one child under five years of age may be referred to Home-Start Colchester for support if they are going through difficulties. With the family’s permission, mothers, fathers, step-parents and carers can all benefit. Families choose to accept Home-Start support and can decide to end the relationship at any time.

Who can refer?

  • Health Visitors
  • Social Workers
  • Midwives
  • Community psychiatric nurses
  • Teachers and ESCos
  • Children’s centre staff
  • Probation officers
  • Playgroup workers
  • GPs
  • Other health workers
  • Arm Welfare Service
  • Families can refer themselves

How to refer a family

  • Talk to the family about Home-Start and how we can help (you can either print off the Get Support page from this website or we can send you information leaflets).
  • Ask the family’s permission to make a referral.
  • Complete a referral form and forward it to our office

What happens after referral?

Each referral will be considered by the Scheme Co-ordinators at the weekly Co-ordinators  Meeting and discussed together with the resources available. The local Co-ordinator will visit the family to clarify their needs and the support which Home-Start could offer.
If and when available, a volunteer, carefully selected for the family, will be introduced.
When a waiting list is in operation the family may need to wait for a suitable volunteer to become available. When a volunteer is introduced the referrer will receive notification.

Our Confidentiality Policy

All personal information about parents and families is treated as confidential, to be discussed only as necessary with the Co-ordinator in support of the volunteer and to assist the family.
Any disclosure of the confidential information to any other person may only be undertaken with the permission of the parents for the purpose of assisting the family, except where it is considered necessary for the protection of a child, in which case information shall be shared with the appropriate authority.
Our policy on confidentiality is made clear by the Co-ordinator on their initial visit to a family and then again when a volunteer is matched.
Referral form
Referral guide