The National Network for Parent Carer Forums (NNPCF) is a group of parent carers working collectively to make a positive difference for and with families of children and young people with additional needs.
The Network is made up of 151 local parent carer forums and is spread across the 9 English regions. One of the key objectives of the Network is to bring local forums together to provide support for each other and to share information and best practice. The Network is a pan disability organisation that promotes parent carer participation and partnership working between parent carers and professionals at all levels.
The Network defines partnership as a process where parent carers are valued members of a team shaping and delivering services for families of children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities. Effective parent participation happens when parents have conversations with and work alongside professionals in order to design, develop and improve services.
NNPCF Markers of good practice for parent carer participation:
• Parent carers’ engagement is valued, planned, and resourced.
• Pan disability parent carer forum linked with effective two way communication with wider parent carer community.
• Parent carer led and solution focussed.
• Constructive partnerships where parent carer participation is evident throughout planning, delivery and monitoring stages with authentic co-ownership of work.
• Parent Carer Forums participate in regional networks and are well linked to local single issue or condition specific groups.
• Transparent written forum governance, including clarity about function of forums, representatives roles and ‘Reward, Recognition and Remuneration’ policy in place.
• Ongoing outreach to build representation and recruit wider membership, offering support and training opportunities.
In the Midlands local forums are supported by two regional networks, one in the East Midlands and one in the West Midlands. Each region has selected one parent carer to sit on the National Network Steering Group. Currently Dave Nutting is the NNPCF representative for the East Midlands and Sarah Thomas is the NNPCF representative for the West Midlands and Co-Chair.
If you want to know more about parent carer participation please visit the NNPCF website http://www.nnpcf.org.uk