Skip Navigation

Home-Start

Program Model Overview

Last Updated

July 2015

Top

Theoretical Model

Home-Start believes that all children should have the support they need to develop and thrive. Through semi-formal, volunteer-led home visits, the program is designed to provide families with support, friendship, and practical help. The goal is to increase parents’ confidence and foster the parenting, budgetary, and life skills necessary for positive outcomes for their children.

The Home-Start model is based on the following theory of change (Sameroff & Fiese, 2000):

  • Parents’ well-being is enhanced when families are provided structured, supervised social support;
  • This leads to increased feelings of parental self-competence;
  • Parental behavior becomes more adaptive and child behavior improves.

Top

Program Model Components

Home-Start coordinators set up an initial visit with the family to discuss its needs and tell the family about the program. The coordinator then matches the skills and experiences of a trained and supervised volunteer home visitor to the needs of the family.

Home-Start services are flexible and each home visitor adapts services to the needs of individual families. Volunteers can provide families with emotional and social support and encouragement; assistance developing life skills such as planning or financial management; assistance with parenting situations or the development of positive parenting practices, or help accessing additional services.

In addition to home visits, Home-Start programs may also offer family group sessions, postnatal depression support groups, healthy eating projects, or special support for fathers. Some Home-Start programs also organize social events and outings to bring local parents and children together.

Top

Target Population

Home-Start focuses on the five years between birth and school, primarily serving families with children younger than age 5. The HomVEE review is based on Home-Start used with families with children age 5 years or younger.

The program supports families who might be struggling to cope with a variety of challenges, including perinatal mental health issues, disability, domestic violence, isolation, poverty, bereavement, multiple births, and the demands of parenting young children.

Families may request support or may be referred by their general practitioner or other social service, health, education, or early years professional. The program is provided to families that request or agree to home visits by a local Home-Start volunteer.

Top

Where to Find Out More

Home-Start UK
The Home-Start Centre
8 – 10 West Walk
Leicester
LE1 7NA
Tel: 0116 258 7900
Fax: 0116 258 7901
Email:info@home-start.org.uk

Home-Start Worldwide
Registered office: The Home-Start Centre
8 – 10 West Walk
Leicester
LE1 7NA
Tel: 0116 258 7900
Fax: 0116 258 7901
Email: info@home-start.org.uk
Website: http://www.home-start.org.uk/

Top