Emotional wellbeing support for new parents in Portsmouth

May 23, 2024
The Families In Mind team

Expectant mums and new parents are being supported with the transition to parenthood, thanks to a new support service being delivered through Portsmouth Family Hubs.

The Families In Mind service, delivered by Solent NHS Trust and funded through the Family Hub and Start for Life programme, aims to improve individual’s emotional wellbeing as they become parents, helping them to develop early relationships with their children.

The team includes Specialist Health Visitors, Community Nursery Nurses and a Mental Health Nurse. One-to-one appointments and groups sessions are delivered across the five Family Hubs in the city.

Charlotte Gatehouse, Specialist Health Visitor for Perinatal and Infant Mental Health at Solent NHS Trust, said:

“Being a parent is hard. There are so many challenges to face and for many expectant and new parents, there can be lots of new feelings to experience.

“Our service is for any parent who might be feeling anxious, worried, lonely, overwhelmed, not confident or not enjoying being a mum or dad, and wanting to learn strategies to improve coping as a parent.

“We offer lots of different support services and our team of trained professionals are here to help.”

The Families In Mind service offers a range of one-to-one and group support, including:

  • Triple P for Baby – an 8-week programme where parents engage in a range of activities to learn strategies to develop a positive relationship with their baby, support their development, and look after their own emotional wellbeing.
  • Bright Beginnings – a 6-week closed group programme where parents discuss how parenthood can affect emotional wellbeing and share ideas of what might be helpful.
  • Emotional Wellbeing visits – an evidence-informed intervention where health visitors visit parents to discuss one-to-one any strategies and ideas to support emotional wellbeing.
  • Video interactive guidance – using video to help understand and improve communication and build trusting relationships between parents and their child.
  • Newborn Behaviour Observation – a one-to-one session with a parent and their newborn baby (up to three months) to explore what the baby likes and dislikes and how the parent can understand their signals.

Sessions are delivered in one of five Portsmouth Family Hubs (Buckland, Milton Park, Northern Parade, Paulsgrove or Somerstown), or at a location agreed between the team and the parent.

One parent who attended a session said:

‘’Families in Mind has been incredibly helpful and came at a good time for me. I am truly grateful to the health worker who spotted I needed help and referred me.

“The care I received has been done with empathy, kindness and felt personal and specific. I really appreciated the time and flexibility around our busy family schedule.”

Find out more about Families In Mind by visiting the service page on Family Assist or calling the team on 0300 123 6629.