Equal opportunities from the start (Newcastle and South Yorkshire)

What is ParentChild+?

ParentChild+ is our early learning programme for families with 2 -4 year olds; we support families to improve their home learning environment so children are ready for school. This programme is being delivered in Newcastle and South Yorkshire. 

Taking a free toy and book each week, trained volunteers model with parents how to play and read with their child. This highly successful programme has been delivered in the USA for over 50 years. Children who have been through this programme:

    • are 50% more likely to measure ready for school
    • enter school performing 10 months above their chronological age

Coronavirus update 

At Family Lives we believe that our services are needed more than ever in the current crisis; we know that many families are experiencing even more challenges. 

We are committed to supporting our families and are providing options to do this either through face-to-face home visits where it is possible and safe, or by phone or video link.

How does it work?

Our Early Learning Volunteers visit families for half an hour, twice a week. The programme lasts for 15 months with 92 visits providing 46 free toys and books to each family. We work alongside parents to model how to increase verbal and non-verbal interactions, develop positive behaviours and encourage early literacy skills. Parents learn how to become their child’s first teacher; children are then ready for school and do well in their education, which sets them up for positive futures.

In South Yorkshire, we’re delivering the ParentChild+ programme in the four Local Authorities of South Yorkshire (Sheffield, Doncaster, Rotherham and Barnsley). Funded by the Education Endowment Foundation and starting in March 2019 this is part of a significant national research project looking into the most effective means of preparing vulnerable children for school. A team from the University of York and Durham University are evaluating the programme as part of a Randomised Control Trial.

In each Local Authority we are delivering ParentChild+ to 40 families and recruiting a further 40 for the control group. Our Coordinator and three Home Visitors in each area work closely with Early Years teams and practitioners.

ParentChild+ is an ideal programme for those families who are not accessing the free two-year-old childcare entitlement, as a transition into attending nursery or as an alternative for those children who are at risk of entering school significantly behind their peers.

Get in touch

We are no longer recruiting for this programme in South Yorkshire but if you want to find out more about ParentChild+ get in touch with