CHARMS - Family Hubs

Family Hubs And Start For Life

“A family hub is a welcoming place where services can be accessed by parents-to-be, parents, carers, families and young people in one place. Every family hub will meet the minimum expectations of the services available face to face (Annex F), although they will be flexible and deliver the services that families need, in the way that they need them. For example, family hubs may be open for long hours, 5-6 days a week to support access. Family hubs will be baby and child-friendly, and parent and carer-friendly, with opportunities for families to meet each other and peers to support each other informally, helping to deal with the stresses and isolation that being a parent and having a new baby can bring. For example, family hubs may have a social area where parents and children can interact with others. It may have resources such as baby mats and toys, or a book corner for toddlers and older children. The family hub may also have an outdoor space for play. Family hubs will also support older children who may access services either at the main hub site or at other connected sites within the hub network.” (Family hubs and start for life programme: local authority guide - August 2022)

Case Records

CHARMS has been used as the core case management system at a number of Children’s Centres for more than 10 years and offers a single, secure, comprehensive solution which enables Family Hub professionals to keep information secure. Families, children and all individuals and professionals in the wider support network can feel safe in the CHARMS environment.

Services and Outcomes Reporting

The core services which government expects local authorities to deliver are:

  1. Face to face at a family hub
  2. Through the family hub but received elsewhere in the network (for example, via outreach, at a youth centre, a clinical setting such as a maternity hub, a voluntary and community sector (VCS) organisation or a faith setting)
  3. Virtually through the family hub, including static online information and/or interactive virtual services

The service expectations to be delivered by Family Hubs, set down here, are:

  1. Activities for children aged 0-5
  2. Birth registration
  3. Debt and welfare advice
  4. Domestic abuse support
  5. Early Language and the Home Learning Environment
  6. Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) and financial support (Tax-Free Childcare, Universal Credit childcare)
  7. Health Visiting
  8. Housing
  9. Infant Feeding Support
  10. Intensive targeted family support services, including those funded by the Supporting Families programme
  11. Local authority 0-19 public health services, based on local needs assessments
  12. Mental health services (beyond Start for Life parent-infant mental health)
  13. Midwifery/maternity
  14. Nutrition and weight management
  15. Oral health improvement
  16. Parent-Infant Relationships and Perinatal Mental Health Support
  17. Parenting Support
  18. Reducing Parental Conflict
  19. SEND support and services (inclusive of the Start for Life period)
  20. Stop smoking support
  21. Substance (alcohol/drug) misuse support
  22. Support for separating and separated parents
  23. Youth justice services
  24. Youth services - universal and targeted

CHARMS Features

With CHARMS, organisations can record all services offered and delivered, and they can access those records 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

Young people and their family members have their own secure login to allow them to share information and see progress and activities.

Outcomes can be monitored and reported upon using the built-in CHARMS Outcomes Tracker.

CHARMS is used by over 50,000 care professionals, support staff, foster carers, adopters and by children and other family members.