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Our advice service

We provide advice to parents, grandparents, relatives, friends and kinship carers who are involved with children’s services in England or need their help. We can help you understand processes and options when social workers or courts are making decisions about your child’s welfare.

Our advice service is free, independent and confidential.

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By phone or email

To speak to an adviser, please call our free and confidential advice line 0808 801 0366 (Monday to Friday 9.30am to 3pm, excluding Bank Holidays). For Textphone dial 18001 followed by the advice line number. Or you can ask us a question via email using our advice enquiry form.

Discuss on our forums

Our online advice forums are an anonymous space where parents and kinship carers (also known as family and friends carers) can get legal and practical advice, build a support network and learn from other people’s experiences.

Advice on our website

Our get help and advice section describes the processes that you and your family are likely to go through, so that you know what to expect. Our webchat service can help you find the information and advice on our website which will help you understand the law and your rights.

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Denbighshire’s family group conference accreditation journey: ‘Making FGC sparkle’

We started our accreditation journey six months ago and what a journey it has been! Although stressful at times, this has been a far better experience than any training we have done.

What we have learnt:

We have learned a lot about our FGC service and what our practice means for the children and families we work with. As a team, we have been able to celebrate the things we do well and look at the ways we can improve.

The accreditation process has meant we have looked outside of our FGC team. We have worked with social workers and other referrers, independent reviewing officers and other practitioners to check our shared understanding of what a good FGC looks like across the local authority. And we will continue to work with our partners to further develop our FGC offer.

In short, accreditation has put the sparkle back into FGC!

Some things we are already doing differently:

  • We have clarified our FGC offer and redesigned the information we give to families.
  • We have simplified our referral process to enable more families to have access to our service.
  • We have changed the way we record and store information to ensure families’ right to privacy and confidentiality.
  • We have revised what data we collect to better inform development of our practice.
  • All coordinators now take part in monthly reflective supervision sessions so we can continue to learn from each other.

Some changes will take a little longer to implement such as the agreement to extend our FGC offer to include referral at the point of initial child protection conference.

This journey to achieve accreditation status is just the beginning for us as a service, not the end, and it is the difference that will make the difference.

Find out how our accreditation could help your family group conference service sparkle here.

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Our funding means we can currently only help 4 in 10 people

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