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Early Support 0-8 Years

A range of services to support families with young Disabled Children, including Portage, Key Works, Contacts and Impact.

Disabled Child playing

Portage

A home visiting service for pre-school children who have special needs.

The service we offer:

  • a structured and flexible approach to learning aimed at the individual needs of the child;
  • to show parents how to introduce, develop and implement teaching techniques in all areas of their child's development including behaviour;
  • to share ideas with parents on how to stimulate their child's learning and together break down certain skills into smaller manageable steps which the parents and child can practice between visits;
  • to provide professional advice and support to parents in all aspects of their child's early development;
  • to help parents develop an understanding of their child's needs and the skills with which to meet those needs;
  • a link for parents and their child during the first phases of their formal education.

Contact information: Phone:  020 8410 3472                   Email: portage@sutton.gov.uk

Contacts

What is CONTACTS?

When a child's special needs or disability are first identified, we know how important it is for the family to be offered the right information and support at the right time. We also know how important it is to make sure that children's needs are taken into account as they move from one service or setting to another. CONTACTS is one of the ways we do this. It involves staff from different agencies working together to make sure that for each child who needs a lot of help from specialist services there is a plan setting what needs to be done and who will do it, a person responsible for coordinating the plan (a 'lead professional') and a date for reviewing the plan.

What is Impact?

An Impact meeting is an opportunity for parents, carers and children and professionals to meet up, share information and to decide and plan for the best way forward in the next few months Impacts is generally for children with disabilities aged 0-8 years. Meetings are kept as informal as possible, parents are encouraged to bring along significant people in the child or family's life and there is an attempt to look at the needs of the whole family. Parents are recognised as experts on their own children, are very much in the driving seat of the meeting and are encouraged to ask questions and to raise any points they wish. A plan in drawn up to best meet the needs identified and is based on the outcomes of being healthy, enjoying and achieving, staying safe, making a positive contribution and achieving economic well-being.

Key workers

A key worker can be a professional from any relevant discipline who is trained and supported to be part of our Key Worker scheme. Key workers are both a source of support for disabled children and their families and a link by which other services are accessed and used effectively. Key workers are responsible for ensuring that everyone a family deals with is working together effectively and to the same plan. Key workers are often allocated to families who are involved with a very large number of different professionals and organisations in order to help make sure that care plans are well coordinated.