Parents & Carers


If you find yourself struggling with aspects of parenting, or other areas of your life, you are not alone. Here at Family First we want to support you to work through the challenges you are currently facing.

Our aim is for parents and carers to increase their confidence, social support networks and mental wellbeing.

Our vision is to see families that are resilient, thriving, and happy.

We seek to help you and your family achieve these aims through several different approaches.

Parent mentoring; Our parent mentoring program provides you with up to 12 months worth of support from a trained family volunteer.  You will be assigned an experienced Family Coordinator who will carry out an initial assessment with you to identify the areas that you need support with. You will then be matched with a suitable volunteer. Our volunteers visit parents and carers for up to an hour a week, to listen, support and encourage them to reach their agreed goals. Your Family Coordinator will support the volunteer and carry out regular reviews to make sure the support you are receiving is working for you. The Family Coordinator can also make referrals to other services if required.

Parenting mentoring is for you, we do not work directly with your children although the work we do has an impact upon your children and wider family life.

We are a flexible service and will aim to try to support you through whatever situation you and your family are in. You must live in Ipswich, or the immediate surrounding area, and have at least one child under the age of 18. 

The sorts of parents we have supported include the following;

  • parents who have children with additional needs and/or challenging and/or violent behaviour
  • parents who are struggling with their own mental health
  • parents who are lacking in confidence or self esteem
  • parents who are parenting alone or are isolated from family or friends
  • parents who have a disability or are experiencing chronic ill health
  • parents who are in debt or at risk of being made homeless
  • parents who are experiencing difficulties in their relationship or are going through separation, divorce or grief

We work with all families regardless of gender, age, ethnicity, religion, sexuality or cultural background.

If you feel you would benefit from our parent mentoring service please call 0300 772 7715 to discuss further or complete the Self Referral Form 2021 and return it to

Parenting courses; We also offer a range of parenting courses. These 6 week courses are free and are DVD/discussion based. They can be accessed through an online group, or face to face group sessions in local schools and community venues. Parents interested in registering for a course can find more details here.

Facebook closed support group; We have a closed Facebook group which is linked to our public Facebook page. Within the closed group we share hints, tips and useful resources and there is also the opportunity to ask questions or offer peer support to other parents. Please follow us on  Facebook or join our closed Facebook group for parents and carers.


Care for the Family is a national Christian charity which supports all aspects of family life. They have several free resources available on their website that you may find helpful, below are links to their free podcasts.