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EIF report

Realising the potential of early intervention


30 Oct 2018

This major report sets out a bold plan of action to ensure effective early intervention is available to the children, young people and families who need it most.




Early intervention is as pertinent to societal concerns today – rising health and social inequalities, mental health problems among children and young people, declining social mobility – as it ever was. 

However, the context for this agenda has changed significantly in recent years. Funding pressures mean councils are struggling to maintain early help and wider preventative services. Questions are being asked about what early intervention can realistically be expected to achieve against a backdrop of rising demand for support and growing concerns about childhood vulnerability. 

While the case for early intervention is strong, the way ahead is not yet secure or mapped out.

This foundational report sets out the current state of play for early intervention, including how it works to support child development and to improve outcomes for children and young people. It highlights significant barriers within the current system that inhibit the potential of early intervention, and a set of key actions – four at the national level, two at the local level – that are required to really push this agenda forward. 

Watch our two-minute summary