Family Start is a free home visiting programme that focuses on supporting
parents from early stages of pregnancy until the child is 5 years old. We also focus on improving Children’s growth, health, learning and relationships.
It helps families/whānau who are struggling with challenges or problems that may make it harder for them to care for their baby or young child. Family Start will begin to support babies and their parents/caregivers early—before the baby’s birth or in their first year.
Family Start will help:
- the child grow strong, learn, stay healthy and have positive
- parents/caregivers to be more
- confident about caring for their child
- families/whānau create a strong and positive future for their child
Who can get help?
If you or the child’s other parent/caregiver have any of these challenges and this is making
parenting harder, Family Start may be able to help.
- don’t know how to make sure your child is healthy and growing strong
- your child has a disability or needs special care
- Child Youth and Family are or have been involved with your family/whānau
- you are a young parent with other
- challenges and need extra support
- serious problems with your partner or
- family/ whānau
- mental health issues
- drinking, using drugs or gambling too much
- abuse when you were a child
When should I contact Family Start
It’s better to get help as soon as you can. We can start any time from when the mother is three months pregnant until the child’s first birthday. But if a child is a bit older, we might still be able to help. We can keep working with you until your child turns five, if you need it.
How will Family Start help my family?
A Family Start whānau worker will:
- visit you at home, starting with once a week, and get to know you, your child, partner and family/ whānau
- find out what parts of being a parent you’ve already got sorted and what you need help with
- help get the right health care for your child
- explain how your baby is growing and changing at different ages
- help you work out what you want to achieve, change or improve, and make a plan with you to help you get there
- offer you advice and ideas, and help you solve problems as you work
- towards your goals
- put you in touch with other help or
- services you need
- support you to keep your baby/child safe
- provide monthly Ahuru Mōwai/Born to Learn parenting education sessions to help you understand your child’s needs at different stages as they grow