Implementing Home-Start

Implementation last updated: 2015

The information in this profile reflects feedback, if provided, from this model’s developer as of the above date. The description of the implementation of the model(s) here may differ from how the model(s) was implemented in the research reviewed to determine this model’s evidence of effectiveness. Inclusion in the implementation report does not mean the practices described meet the HHS criteria for evidence of effectiveness. Similarly, models described here may not all have impact studies, and those with impact studies may vary in their effectiveness. Please see the Effectiveness button on the left for more information about research on the effectiveness of the models discussed here.

Prerequisites for implementation

Type of implementing program

At the local level, Home-Start is implemented by local programs known as “schemes’ that are operated by a board of trustees that employs and oversees staff and volunteer home visitors.

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Staffing requirements

Home-Start uses volunteer home visitors to implement the program and employs an organizer/coordinator who administers the program and recruits, selects, trains, supervises, and supports the volunteer home visitors. Volunteers must pass an enhanced background check.

Each local Home-Start program is independently run and managed by volunteer trustees. Trustees typically work 8 to 10 hours per month. They are responsible for

  • The scheme’s vision
  • Leading strategic direction
  • Compliance with legal and regulatory requirements
  • The performance and quality of the scheme
  • Ensuring that the scheme operates within the Home-Start agreement
  • The scheme’s property
  • Financial management and security
  • Good governance
  • The promotion of Home-Start
  • Employing and overseeing staff
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Staff education and experience

Home-Start volunteer home visitors must have experience with children. Most volunteers are parents themselves, although the program also attracts trainees from fields such as social work. Home visitors must be nonjudgmental, accepting, and strive to support families as they try to give children the best possible start in life.

Home-Start UK encourages all organizers/coordinators who train home visitors to achieve at least a City & Guilds Level 3 Award in Education and Training and, if delivering an accredited course, they must achieve a Level 4 Certificate.

Volunteer trustees typically have experience in key areas such as business management, finance, fundraising, health and social services, information technology, and human resources. They must be 18 years of age or older and cannot have been convicted of an offense involving deception or been previously removed as a trustee.

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Supervision requirements

Home-Start organizers/coordinators recruit, select, and prepare volunteers and provide continuous, ongoing support, training, and supervision in accordance with a mandatory supervision policy.

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Staff ratio requirements

Home-Start UK generally recommends that an hour of a coordinator’s time can support one family, although many factors can alter this ratio.

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Data systems/technology requirements

The Home-Start Monitoring and Evaluation System captures information about families and activities undertaken by schemes to provide a local and national picture of Home-Start services.

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Implementation notes

The information contained on this page was last updated in July 2015. Recommended Further Reading lists the sources for this information. In addition, the information contained in this profile was reviewed for accuracy by Home-Start UK on April 24, 2015. HomVEE reserves the right to edit the profile for clarity and consistency.

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