‌‌‌‌Early Help Assessment

What is an Early Help Assessment?

The Early Help Assessment (EHA) is our local assessment that is used by all agencies working with children and their families in Derby and Derbyshire to agree what extra help may be needed to support a child or young person at an early stage.

The Early Help Assessment will help to practitioners work with the family to:

  • clarify the child and their family's needs and strengths; and
  • coordinate the help and services that are needed.

Using an Early Help Assessment can make sure that decisions are made at the earliest opportunity to improve the situation for the child and their family.

If you're not sure if an Early Help Assessment is needed you can use the Derby Early Help Pre-assessment 2019. This will help to identify and document low level needs and the action to be taken, including an Early Help Assessment. 

Early Help Assessments should not be used if you are concerned about child abuse or neglect. For more information please see Worried About a Child?

How to complete an Early Help Assessment

Talk to the child and their family, the early help assessment is about working in partnership with families and their involvement is very important.

  • Discuss and agree a way forward with your manager.
  • Working with the child and family, complete the ‌Early Help Assessment Form ‌as far as you can; this will help decide the next steps.
  • If a multi-agency response is needed, agree with the family to arrange a Team Around the Family (TAF) meeting to bring together other agencies so that the range of support can be coordinated to meet the child's needs. 
  • The Team Around the Family (TAF) meeting can help you to plan and record what is agreed. ‌

Remember to refer to the Thresholds Document as this will help identify the levels of need, what support may be needed and if a referral to other agency is needed. At each stage of the process consider if there are any safeguarding concerns and if any are identified follow the safeguarding children procedures.  

For more information about how to complete an Early Help Assessment, please see Guidance for Completing an Early Help Assessment 2019.  You can also refer to the Providing Early Help chapter in the Derby and Derbyshire Safeguarding Children Procedures.  

If the family has specific complex needs and the whole family require support, you can use the EHA to support a referral to the Priority Families programme.   

Support for completing an Early Help Assessment and Training

If you need advice or support about the early help assessment and work in Derbyshire you can contact your locality Multi Agency Team (MAT) Manager or Starting Point. In Derby you can contact a locality based Early Help Adviser (see below) or phone Children's Services Professional Consultation which offers advice, the opportunity to explore ways of engaging with children and families in early help and whether thresholds for Social Care or MAT services have been met. The service is available between 10am and 1pm on 07812 300329.

LocalityAreas CoveredContact Details
Locality 1/5        Derwent, Chaddesden, Spondon, Oakwood, Mackworth, Allestree and Darley       01332 640723 or 641074    
Locality 2 Sinfin, Alvaston, Boulton, Chellaston, Osmaston and Allenton 01332 641028 or 715625
Locality 3/4 Balgreaves, Littleover, Mickleover, Normanton and Abbey 01332 642848

Early Help Assessment Training

The DDSCP training programme includes further details of multi-agency early help training.