What do we know about Family Interventions?
Family Interventions work with among the most 'troubled' of the 120,000 families that the Prime Minister has pledged to support. They tackle anti-social behaviour, youth crime, inter-generational disadvantage and worklessness in these families. A dedicated key worker co-ordinates an intensive and persistent multi-agency approach to supporting the whole family to overcome their problems.
The latest report is based on the analysis of just under 9,000 families who were accepted for one of 385 family interventions operating in March 2011. It is available here.
How we conducted the study
Comprehensive data about families who have been referred to a family intervention is entered on to a secure online system by family intervention staff.
This information provides evidence about the type of families referred, their circumstances and risk factors when a Support Plan is put in place, their outcomes when a family exits an intervention and whether these outcomes are sustained nine to 14 months later.
The latest evidence
Family Interventions continue to report impressive outcomes for at least half of the families they work with. Families had completely addressed their issues and problems when they exited a family intervention in the following areas:
Forty-eight per cent of families addressed their poor family functioning including their parenting skills, relationship or family breakdown, domestic violence or child protection issues.
Fifty-seven per cent of families were no longer involved in crime/anti-social behaviour.
Thirty-nine per cent of families addressed their mental or physical health problems and drug or alcohol misuse.
Fifty-seven per cent of families resolved any education issues with children truanting, being excluded, or behaving badly at school.
In twenty per cent of households not in work, education or training at least one adult family member was engaged in one of these activities by the time they exited.
There is also encouraging evidence that these outcomes are sustained nine to 14 months after leaving a family intervention
The longer families work with a family intervention the greater the chance that they will achieve successful outcomes.
For the first time we have reported on the impact of family interventions − investigating the impact of FIPs that focus on anti-social behaviour. This small scale impact assessment provides clear evidence that these family interventions reduce the criminal and anti-social behaviour of the families they work with.