What is Family Hubs and Start for Life?

family hub start for life logo

Family Hubs

Across the Bradford district our Family Hubs support families with children and young people of all ages and at every stage of family life. 

Family Hubs are places in the heart of the community where you can attend appointments, meet with staff for a chat, or take part in courses and activities. 

This section has more information about our Family Hubs and what they offer, including a timetable of events for each hub.

We also have lots of advice, information and resources based on age group and links to other organisations who can help with family life.

Start For Life

Start for Life provides extra support to families to improve children's lives, from when the baby is conceived up to the age of two.

The extra help provided through Start For Life will include support for:

  • Mental well-being before and after your child is born
  • Helping you build a good relationship with your baby
  • Supporting you to get through everyday parenting challenges
  • Helping you with feeding your baby
  • The first stages of learning to to talk and other important childhood skills
  • Involving families in decisions about the services that support them
  • Making information easier to find

Over the coming months we will be providing updates on how the Start for Life offer may benefit you and your family.

Check out the new services being offered below, and sign up to our monthly newsletter so you can be the first to hear about what's coming next!

Baby Steps for expectant parents

Baby Steps is now funded to cover all of the Bradford District!

Baby Steps and Action for Children logos

Baby Steps is aimed at families expecting a baby. The programme uses a combination of home visits and friendly online group sessions to help families feel happier, healthier and more confident as they look forward to meeting and caring for their new baby.

Now, with new funding from Family Hubs and Start for Life, it will be offered to a wider reach of families across all areas of our district.

To find out more, including the referral criteria, and an online application form, please take a look on the Parenting Programmes for Families page 

The form can be completed by parents or a practitioner supporting them.

HENRY programmes for expectant/new parents

New programmes and workshops available district wide

Image of a bear, Henry logo, healthy start brighter future

We are pleased to share that we have a 6 week programme; Preparation for parenthood and two exciting new workshops; Becoming a new family and Understanding your child's behaviour.  

These programmes are available across the district to all parents/carers, and we encourage anyone who is supporting to come along too!

To find out more and to register using a simple onnline form please take a look on the Parenting Programmes for Families page 

The form can be completed by parents/carers or a practitioner supporting them.

Listening support service in pregnancy and after birth

Feeling down, anxious or lonely during pregnancy and after childbirth is common. 

If you are pregnant or have a child under two, help is at hand.

Family Action can support your emotional health and well-being by providing a listening ear, encouraging you to share and offload, as well as help you to take part in local groups and activities.

Using a peer support model, they offer an hour each week of listening support, in your home, or remotely. Trained in listening, all their staff and volunteers have parenting experience themselves and understand the challenges you face.

The great news is that we have funded their service to cover the whole of the Bradford District, so more families will be able to benefit from their support. 

To find out more or request support, you can contact them by:

Calling 07966 926 849

E-mail: perinatalsupport@family-action.org.uk

Following on Facebook - Family Action Bradford Perinatal Support Service

Help to build a relationship with your baby

Logo for ready to relate , a colourful heart which also depicts a parent and a baby

Ready to Relate is a programme delivered by Bradford District Care Trust that aims to help you understand your amazing baby! 

Head over to the Ready to Relate website where you can find some helpful information and activities to help you build a satisfying and enjoyable relationship with your baby.

The website has an amazing toolkit, to access this you will need a password. Please speak to your midwife, health visitor or a family navigator at your local hub who can take you through this.

The Family Hub and Start for Life programme has funded training for all staff who work with families across the district. If you are a practioner and would like to know more, please visit Ready to Relate training programme

Help with mental health and your relationship with your baby

Little Minds Matter - Bradford Infant Mental Health Service logo with baby and mother

Little Minds Matter helps babies get the best possible start in life! They work with families with a baby, from conception to when the child is 2 years old, within the Bradford district who may be feeling really sad or worried. Families could be struggling with their feelings towards their baby, finding it difficult to calm their baby or feeling like their baby doesn’t respond to them.

The great news is that we have funded their service to cover the whole of the Bradford District, so more families will be able to benefit from their support. 

The Little Minds Matter team is made up of various health professionals, such as midwives, health visitors, therapeutic social workers, psychologists and community engagement. These professionals can support families in Family Hub sites, their own homes or within a group setting. They deliver some amazing group work via baby massage or circle of security.

For more information, including how to refer yourself or someone else, please visit our Mental Health and Well-Being in Pregnancy and Mental Health and Well-Being after giving birth information pages.

Little Minds Matter are also listed on our service directory and their groups can be found on our Family hub timetables.

Support for speech and language

We have funded BHT Early Education and Training to support families all across the district if they have concerns about their child's speech and language. There are two parts to the support we have funded:

  • 'Wise Owls' - a drop-in session for families with children aged 18 months-4 years, taking place weekly in each area of the district. 
  • 'Owlets' - a six week focused programme which is accessed by a referral form a health visitor.

For more information visit:

What should my baby be doing now? in the birth - 2 section and

What should my child be doing now? in the 2-5 section.

The Wise Owl drop-in sessions take place once a week in each of the 4 hub area. A team of dedicated Language Development Workers will be on hand to listen to concerns, provide advice and support and signpost to relevant support services

Check out our Family Hub timetables to find a suitable session, they can also be found on our What's On calendar

Support with your child's education or development

Jump aboard logo, details have been written out in paragraphs on page

If you're concerned about your child's education or development, our monthly Jump Aboard sessions with educational psychologists can help:

  • In a free consultation, talk through concerns and develop next steps for how to support your child.
  • For children and young people of all ages
  • Can cover topics such as autism and ADHD, speech and language needs, learning difficulties, social and emotional needs and sensory needs
  • Information on education, health and care (EHC)
  • With educational psychologists Dr Jessica Allen-Summers or Martin Pilkington

Sessions happen once a month in each of our four Family Hub areas.  For more details, click here for links to each hub's latest timetables.

Parenting Support for children aged 3 and 4

Incredible Years Preschool have been funded to deliver a brand new programme for families with children aged 3 to 4 years.

The programme will be suitable for any family that would like a bit of extra help with child attachment issues, language development concerns, their behaviour, or confidence with social situations.

Many families may benefit from this support – this is the generation of babies who were born during or just before the Covid pandemic, where opportunities to socialise were limited during critical stages of babies’ development.

Families can self-refer or practitioners can make a referral with consent.

Find out more and apply by visiting our Parenting Programmes for Families page.

Did you know?

The first 1,001 days of your baby's life (even from when mum gets pregnant) are one of the most important times for your baby's life-long health, development and well-being.

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