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Troubled Families


Assertive Outreach

Assertive Outreach work with families whose needs are at risk of becoming complex. The service uses an evidence based approach and collaborates with the customer and other agencies to provide a 6 month sequenced programme of support to assist customers to find realistic solutions to problems they face. This involves looking at root causes of issues and challenging patterns of behaviour which will undermine progress. The aim is to empower people to take control of their lives and to learn skills that will help them to be more independent in the future.

For more information about the service and making a referral contact : 0161 219 6967

Complex Families Parenting Team

The Complex Families Parenting Team deliver evidence-based parenting interventions to families with a range of complex needs.  The child age range the programmes cover is from two to sixteen years, or up to 18 where there is a specific need identified at assessment.  The team also provide additional parenting related support to help families implement the strategies in between sessions.  Programmes run for two to three hours per week for between eight and 20 weeks following the same pattern as primary school terms. The service is needs-led and parents attend the most appropriate course for their needs. Parenting Courses offered include: The Incredible Years School Aged Programme; The Incredible Years Advanced Programme; Triple P Group Teen; Strengthening Families 10–14; Strengthening Families, Strengthening Communities; Parenting Your Teen in Manchester.

For more information about the service and making a referral contact : 0161 953 8462

Family Intervention Project

The Family Intervention Project uses an assertive and persistent approach to engage the most challenging hard-to-reach families. A key worker is assigned to the family, who identifies and co-ordinates a package of multi-agency interventions to meet their support needs and challenge negative behaviours. FIP work to a national evidence-based model, which includes a whole family assessment and support planning process. A co-ordinated multi-agency approach is facilitated to provide a flexible package of support and implement a range of bespoke interventions. FIP key workers work intensively with families, visiting them three to four times (for around five hours) each week. They work with five families and take a whole-family approach. The FIP delivers direct interventions and also co-ordinates the work of other specialist agencies.

For more information about the service and making a referral contact : 0161 245 7699/7696  

Children In Need Intervention Service

The Child in Need Intervention Service is a new service that works with specific child in need cohort;  families that are identified by a social worker as meeting the CiN threshold after completion of the Child and Family Assessment (CAFA) or following a period of social work intervention such as the ending of a child protection plan. On agreement with the social worker, social work team manager and Child in Need Intervention Service leader, the social worker will transfer the role of ‘lead worker’ to the Child in Need Intervention Service worker and the case will then be closed to the social worker.  Only social workers can refer into the service.

Families First

The Families First Team work with families with children at the edge of care and to keep them together where it is safe to do so. Families First work intensively with families to break entrenched cycles and build on existing strengths and skills that will help the children to be safe and enable families to stay together. Referrals are made by the families social worker who need to contact the team directly.  Only social workers can refer into the service.

For more information about the service and making a referral contact : 0161 225 9293

Big Life Families (Working Well)

Big Life have been commissioned to work with a cohort of 60 cases over the next 12 months, building on their successful delivery of the Working Well programme. Big Life key-workers have experience working with families through Big Families Early Intervention Project, and employment-focussed programmes through Working Well. Key-workers provide a lighter touch intervention than FRS, and work with cases for a 3 month period, focussing on employment outcomes in line with Working Well targets (20% into employment, 15% sustained employment), using Motivational Interviewing (MI) and Behaviour Change intervention.

Cases will have lighter touch intervention than FIP / AO, there will be an expectation that there will be some motivation within cases towards employment, and one or more of the ‘toxic trio’ (Mental Health, DV, Alcohol / Substance Misuse). There is an expectation that Big Life key-worker will also case manage 10 – 15 single adult / adult only households’ referrals as part of their offer. This service offer can also be utilised as a step-down pathway from current FIP and AO cases.

For more information about the service and making a referral contact : 0161 219 6967

Big Manchester (North Manchester only)

Big Manchester is an ambitious child-focused family service that aims to address the impact that domestic abuse, parental mental ill health and/ or substance misuse can have on children. (The project can only support families where then eldest child in the household is under the age of 11).
The project is Lottery funded and involves a strong voluntary sector partnership led by Barnardos. The service takes a whole family approach with a focus on offering intensive 1:1 therapeutic support and group work, to children aged 5-10 to help them to  better understand their experiences and feelings and therefore increase their resilience. The Family Intervention workers also assist parents in identifying and addressing their own support needs. BM is trialling the use of family budgets to support engagement and family recovery. The project is also developing a peer support / community engagement for families involved.