We appreciate this is a difficult and challenging time for Lambeth families. We are working hard to keep essential services running, however many services have been reduced or stopped due to staff illness or closed to slow the spread of coronavirus.
We will give you as much information as possible to help support you through this pandemic. This page has been created to keep you informed about changes to services for children and young people.
Services may change due to staff availability and changes to government advice. Please check service provider websites to confirm services are still running before you attend.
Your child’s school, college or nursery will have written to you about the arrangements for the week starting 23 March. Please check their website for updates as how this arrangement works may change over time. Schools will also communicate via email or text if this is their usual method of communication.
Details of activities that you can do with your child will be sent by the school and supplemented on the @LSPLambeth twitter feed.
All Lambeth children’s centre buildings will be closed until further notice due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Children’s centre teams have been busy collecting information about activities for you to do at home with your children. These include story and rhyme sessions with some familiar children’s centre faces! They have also collected useful information and advice for parents, covering a wide range of topics.
You can view the information by Better Start area here:
- North Lambeth Better Start Area
- Brixton Stockwell Better Start Area
- Brixton Tulse Hill Better Start Area
- Streatham and Norwood Better Start Areas
- Clapham and Brixton Hill Better Start Area
You may also like to read our borough-wide children's centre newsletters which we are producing to share more information and suggestions for you:
What support is available?
Children’s centre staff are available to provide support to families of young children aged 0-4 in Lambeth by phone, and will make referrals on your behalf to other agencies if needed.
Children’s centre staff will provide:
- someone to talk to about any concerns you have
- home-based activities for your young children
- support with parenting
- support with feeding your baby
- support with feeding your family
- support and signposting if you are concerned about your children’s health or development
- support with managing your money
- support if you are at risk of homelessness
- support with finding employment
- support with your co-parenting relationship.
How do I get children’s centre support?
Families living in Lambeth with children aged 0-4 can get children’s centre support by:
- Call 020 7926 2369 from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.
- Or fill out this form and someone will get in contact with you.
Do not use this process in an emergency.
If you believe a vulnerable adult, child or young person is in immediate danger then you should call 999 straight away.
If you have any concerns about someone’s coronavirus symptoms, it’s best to contact NHS 111 to speak a health professional:
- Information about safeguarding vulnerable adults
- Contact social services if you're worried about a child
If you need immediate support because of domestic or gender based violence:
- call the Gaia Centre on 020 7733 8724
- email email@example.com
What happens next?
If you ask for support by phone, a member of children’s centre staff will ask you for a few details. These will ensure that your request is passed onto the best person to help you, and they will call you back as soon as possible.
If you ask for support using the online form, the same process will be followed and we will use the information you provide to find the best person to help you, and they will contact you as soon as possible.
We will try to help you as quickly as possible but may not be able to respond the same day.
Early years health services
Your child’s health
If you have a question related to your child’s health you can contact the Health Visiting Service in Lambeth on 020 3049 5300.
Support with feeding your baby
You can also contact the Lambeth Breastfeeding Peer Support Service, which is run by the Breastfeeding Network:
- Phone: 07394 724 599
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Lambeth breastfeeding facebook page contains information, advice and guidance on breastfeeding at this time, as well as details of daily online support groups.
Unicef have also provided information and advice on infant feeding for those who may be concerned about Covid 19.
Speech and Language Therapy
Speech and Language therapy for young children aged 0-4 in Lambeth is provided by the team at Evelina London. There has been disruption to the service due to coronavirus, but support is still available through virtual appointments. Visit the Evelina website for the most up to date information.
You may also be used to your child seeing a speech and language therapist in a Chattertime group at a children’s centre. Chattertime sessions are now being run online instead. Visit the facebook page to check dates and times and to view or join a session.
If you would like to find out more, please complete our online referral form and we will be in touch with you soon.
You can also access helpful tips for parenting during Covid-19 in over 50 languages from Parenting for Lifelong Health.
Youth and play
Stay safe, healthy, positive, active, connected and informed. #StayInPower
Even though we can't deliver face to face and group activities from our youth and play services, most providers are now offering their services online. Lambeth’s Family Information Directory now contains helpful listings of the services, activities, support and resources available for young people during the coronavirus epidemic.
We’ve launched a young people's guide to coronavirus
It's a one-stop-shop for up to date information, advice and great ideas for making the most of lockdown. Everything they need to know, all from trusted sources, without the fake news and presented in seven sections for young people.
Get early years Ofsted registered childcare for a vulnerable child and/or for the child of a keyworker
Nationally, during the COVID-19 crisis, early years childcare providers will only be offering childcare for vulnerable children aged 0 to 5 and those children of key workers. Find out who is defined as a key worker and a vulnerable child.
If you meet the criteria, please apply for childcare using this online form. Once we have received your completed form, we will help you to find suitable childcare in your preferred area in Lambeth. If you are not able to access the online form, please email Kathryn Shaw at Kshaw2@lambeth.gov.uk.
If you are looking for childcare for when the COVID-19 lockdown period has come to an end, or you require information relating to early years activities and provision, please email the Families Information Service (FIS) at FIS@lambeth.gov.uk.
Childcare fees during coronavirus-related closures
The government has identified ways to support local childcare businesses during the coronavirus crisis to mitigate the financial impact of closures related to coronavirus.
Based on the government’s guidance, the advice from the local authority is that providers should not be charging fees to parents/carers for childcare if they are currently closed and unable to provide childcare services. As most childcare providers in Lambeth are private businesses you will need to discuss this with them directly and confirm any expectations with regards to possible retainer fees that may be applicable.
We will be putting in place a core service offer for families who receive short breaks. This will involve reduced face to face activity and increased use of digital communications to support families at home.
If you are a parent / carer of a child who receives short breaks services, for specific advice we would recommend that you contact your social worker or the Children with Disabilities Duty Social Worker (0207 926 6916).
Parents and carers may find the following links helpful :
National Autistic Society – guidance and helpline for parents’, young people and staff
Mencap - Easy Read guide to Coronavirus
Carers UK - Guidance for carers
SEND support or EHC plans
Please do not attend activities and events if you or your child are unwell. If you or your child develop new symptoms of a persistent cough and/or temperature please follow government guidance on self-isolation. Find out more about coronavirus and how to self-isolate
Concern for a child's safety
Concern for a child's mental wellbeing
- Opening hours: Monday to Friday 9.30am to 4pm
- Telephone: 0808 802 5544
More support organisations to help with your child's wellbeing can be found in our Young People's Essential Guide to the Coronavirus
Domestic & sexual violence
If you’re in Lambeth the Gaia Centre can help. Confidential advice & support by phone, text or email – whatever’s safest. Gaia can support with options around safe housing and legal advice for survivors.
Tel: 020 7733 8724 or Email: email@example.com The Gaia Centre Website.
For 24/7 advice for yourself or someone else contact the freephone National Domestic Abuse Helpline. Tel: 0808 2000 247. National Domestic Abuse Helpline
If you are in immediate danger, always call the police on 999.
For more information, resources and support options please see the Lambeth Council VAWG Webpages.
These pages are regularly updated as the local and national situation develops. We will use social media to alert families to changes and disruptions to local services. Follow the Family Information Service on Twitter @LambethFIS and for updates on all council services follow the main council Twitter account @Lambeth_Council
Need translation? You can translate the Lambeth Council website by selecting your language at the bottom of any page.