Early Help and Local Area Teams

When should I contact MASH Early Help Team?

Where you feel a family needs can be supported at an early help level, you can speak with a MASH Early Help Coordinator who can provide advice and support about early help assessments, processes and interventions. They can be contacted on 551900 option 2.

If making a referral for early help support please submit the MASH Referral Form to earlyhelp@york.gov.uk

Early help is everyone’s responsibility and typically best provided or coordinated by the organisations already working with the child and their family. Support delivered by practitioners with established positive relationships will always have greater chance of engaging children and families and maximising positive outcomes.

Keeping Children Safe in Education 2018 reminds us that

Schools and colleges and their staff are an important part of the wider safeguarding system for children. This system is described in statutory guidance Working Together to Safeguard Children.

And Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018 states

Decisions about who should be the lead practitioner should be taken on a case-by-case basis and should be informed by the child and their family.

What happens when the MASH Early Help Team is contacted?

The MASH and wider children’s services use various tools to identify the most appropriate level of support. One of these tools is the Levels of Need document. When working with a child, young person or family you should use this to help identify the most appropriate support for them.

The MASH Early Help Coordinators will provide advice and triage early help referrals to help identify the most appropriate support for the families. This support may include that of partner agencies and/or the Local Area Teams.

The Local Area Teams can support families whose needs meet those described in Level 3 of the Levels of Need document and where Targeted Early Help support is required. This support will include direct work with members of those families, and where there is an increased level of risk, the Local Area Teams may also take on the role of Lead Practitioner within the Family Early Help Assessment (FEHA) process.

Where a family’s needs meet those described in Level 2 of the Levels of Need document, support should be offered from the existing network of professionals already supporting the family. In most cases, it is recommended that this support is coordinated through the FEHA process.

If the Local Area Teams have been part of the TACF, they will withdraw from this after successful intervention and the FEHA process will continue with the existing network of professionals.

If there has been a higher level of risk, and the Local Area Teams have been the Lead Practitioner, but the level of risk has now reduced, then a new Lead Practitioner will need to be identified from the existing network of professionals and the Local Area Teams will withdraw from this.

What support can the MASH Early Help Team Coordinators provide?

The MASH Early Help Coordinators are able to support you in your role of supporting families at an early help level and coordinating through the FEHA process.

Support available includes –

  • There is an Early Help Training Offer available which includes 4 modules to support with the FEHA process, this will be delivered as multi agency training sessions, or can be delivered as bespoke sessions in your school.
  • The MASH Early Help Coordinators will provide a prepopulated FEHA including any details they may have gathered as part of their enquiries. This will help to facilitate the progression of the FEHA process.
  • A Responses to Need document has been created to provide details of appropriate services available to support specific needs of the children, young people and families you are working with.
  • Advice and support around the FEHA process is available from the Local Area Teams via your link worker or the MASH Early Coordinators.
  • The Family Information Service can provide details of services available to support any needs identified within the FEHA process. They can be contacted via fis@york.gov.uk or 01904 554444.

If you have a concern that a child is vulnerable or at risk of significant harm please contact the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub in York.

Phone: 01904 551900

Email: MASH@york.gov.uk

Post: MASH, West Offices, Station Rise, York, YO1 6GA

Outside office hours, at weekends and on public holidays contact the emergency duty team telephone: 01609 780780

Local Area Teams - localities

The map below shows how Local Area Teams reach across the city through three localities. Local Area Teams will have their office bases located at the three designated children’s centres of:

  • Tang Hall
  • Hob Moor
  • Clifton

Officers will be based in these locations but will operate across the city either through supporting other practitioners or work directly with children, young people and families.

Management Team

City-wide

Niall McVicar – Head of Early Help and Local Area Teams

Alan Hodgson – Outcomes and Quality Manager

 

Area

Service Manager

Practice Manager

North

Steve Flatley

Jackie Royce / Beth France

West

Steve Flatley

Sarah Lewis

East

Paula Richardson

Jonathan Gregory