Family life is different for all of us. What we have to deal with as a family and the challenges we face can sometimes make us feel we are on our own without support.
There are organisations we can reach out to when we need a helping hand through a crisis or if we need someone to talk to, someone to give information, advice and a listening ear.
Whatever you are going through as a family, advice and support is available to help you get through difficult times and enjoy the best of family time together.
Citizen's Advice -Legal difference between living together and civil partnership.
GOV.UK - what the law says about marriage and civil partnerships.
Register Office in Sandwell.
Citizen's Advice - Separation and getting a divorce.
GOV.UK - Get a Divorce Step by Step.
Family Lives - advice on supporting children through a divorce.
Divorce and separation - how to manage your money.
A guide to divorce.
What the law says - LGBT Rights and Equality.
Same Sex relationships and Civil Partnership rights.
Local support and refuge for women suffering domestic abuse and sexual violence.
Relate advice if you're having problems in your family life.
NHS Services, support and tips if you care for someone under 21, and moving to adult social services.
Childline - help for whatever is going on in the family.
Tips and tricks to help with difficult behaviour and negative emotions.
Relate - advice on parenting stepfamilies.
Family Lives - advice on becoming a stepfamily.
Help with common issues in stepfamily life.
Create a successful blended family.
Advice on common problems families face coming together in new relationships.
Adding a new baby to an already blended family.
Family Lives - coping if a parent goes to prison.
An information service for all professionals who come into contact with the children and families of offenders.
A national charity that advises parents, grandparents, relatives and friends about their rights and options.
Fostering & Adoption
Information about fostering in Sandwell.
Care of a child by someone who is not their parent or a close relative.
Find out who can adopt and what you need to do.
Children need a stable home; can you help?
Advice and support with making this difficult decision.
Information for children and young people who are being adopted.
Information, advice and guidance for teenagers and their families.
NHS Teenage Pregnancy support.
Family Lives -Information and advice for young parents.
Little Lullaby offers young parent support by young parents.
Gingerbread - Advice for young single parents.
Home Start - advice for young mothers.
Childline - help and support for young parents.
Advice for parents on supporting their teenager with their pregnancy.
If you are under 16, there are only a few benefits you can claim in your own right.
Once you are 16, there are more benefits you can claim in your own right.
NCT information and advice on birth and labour for Dads and Birth Partners.
NHS advice on support during labour and birth.
Gingerbread advice for single Dads.
Support for dads worried about or suffering from Depression, Anxiety and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
The essential guide for new dads, developed with the NHS.
A quick run-down of benefits for single dads and how to make a claim.
Family Lives advice for Dads to be.
Information and support for partners.
GOV.UK information on paternity entitlement and statutory rights.
guidance on parent's legal rights and responsibilities.
Kinship care is when a child lives full-time or most of the time with a relative or friend who isn’t their parent, usually because their parents aren’t able to care for them. That relative or friend is called a ‘kinship carer’, and it’s estimated that around half of kinship carers are grandparents, but many other relatives including older siblings, aunts, uncles, as well as family friends and neighbours can also be kinship carers.
Information for all kinship carers - grandparents, siblings, aunts, uncles, and family friends who step up to raise children when their parents aren’t able to.
An opportunity to meet other kinship carers and get advice and support.
Key legislation, regulation, guidance and research relating to kinship care.
Get support and financial help if someone else’s child is living with you full time.
Information about private fostering and safeguarding children in Sandwell.
Being a Young Carer
Young carers are young people aged five to 18 who look after a family member who is ill, disabled, is experiencing mental ill health, or is affected by alcohol and/or substance misuse.
The Children and Families Act 2014 and the Care Act 2014 gave young carers improved rights to an assessment of their needs.
If you or your parents request it, a social worker from your local council must visit to carry out a young carer's assessment.
A young carer's assessment can determine whether it's appropriate for you to care for someone else, and takes into account whether you want to be a carer.
The social worker must also look at your education, training, leisure opportunities and views about your future.
As part of the assessment, the social worker must ask about your wishes and involve you, your parents and anyone else you or your parents want to be involved.
Getting an assessment is the best way to find out what's available in your situation.
Contact Sandwell Council on 0121 569 2200 to talk to a social worker.
Sandwell Young Carers provides guidance and support to children and young people (aged 5-18) whose health, education and social lives have been affected as a result of caring for a dependent family member.
emotional support, drop in centres, trips and activities for young carers.
Sidekick is a confidential helpline for young carers in the UK. You can message us any time, about anything that's bothering you as a young carer.
NHS advice on being a young carer, your rights and who can support you.
A benefit available to young carers 16 and over who are working.
If you care for someone, you can have an assessment to see what might help make your life easier.
NHS information and advice on fertility, conception, adoption, co-parenting and surrogacy.
Parental responsibility, adopting, fostering, co-parenting, fertility treatment and surrogacy.
Family Lives information and advice on same sex relationships and parenting.
Gingerbread advice on issues that may be of particular relevance to LGBTQ+ single parents or where extra information may be helpful, such as parental responsibility and workplace rights.
Information for Grandparents and family where Grandparents become kinship carers.
Help for grandparents looking after grandchildren.
Sandwell’s Changes Antenatal offer – a two hour session specifically designed to support grandparents-to-be or other family members.
Age UK top tips for Grandparents and Grandparents to be.
Tips for Grandparents who become their Grandchildren's main carers.
Bereavement and Loss
Childline support and advice to help children cope with death and grief.
Free, confidential support for families in Sandwell.
NHS advice on coping with stages of grief.
Advice on helping your child cope with the loss of someone close to them.
Supporting children and young people after the death of a parent or sibling.