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Universal and targeted services

Services for children and young people in Somerset are organised as universal services, targeted services and specialist services. Everyone's needs should be met by the range of services on offer, starting with universal services.

Whether you have additional needs or not, you should be able to use the services available to everyone and they should respond to your needs to the limit of their resources and knowledge.

It might be necessary to supplement universal services after assessment, so that a child or young person can access more targeted services, meeting their individual support needs. These may be services for a particular group of people and involve working with expert teams.

For example, all children and families could make use of educational services and some aspects of the health service. This would be 'Universal'. But, children and young people who need more support may access 'targeted' services.

Agencies can help families with particular and immediate issues, and they can support more long-term needs. By becoming involved in helping at an early stage, needs can be met earlier and do not necessarily escalate.

The Strategy provides information about how this works.

The Early Help Assessment is used to assess and identify a child or young person's need for targeted services.