Multiple & Complex Needs

Report to show understanding of complex and multiple needs of families and their impact.

Complex and multiple needs in terms of the needs of families mean that they fall into more than one category of those problems that put extra pressure on family life and have a detrimental effect on their quality of life.   There are a wide range of problems that fall into the category of multiple and complex needs.   Some of these are poverty, substance abuse, health issues, relationship breakdown, domestic abuse, bereavement and antisocial behaviour.   Most importantly it has a serious effect on the parent’s ability to effectively meet their children’s needs and will have an impact on the child’s developmental needs.  

For example I work with a family with four children; Dad has been in and out of prison on a number of occasions since I have worked with the family.   The youngest son has special needs and has behavioural issues that impact on the family as a whole.   Dad has a history of drug use and Mum moved the family to our area which is a significant distance from where they previously lived and where all her family support network are.   This step was in order to try and remove Dad from the “bad crowd” he previously associated with.   Mum puts extra pressure on the oldest child to behave as she does not want him to follow the same path as his Dad.   Although this family are trying their best to improve the outcomes for their children, we often have low level safeguarding concerns raised by staff about the welfare of the children.  

There can be both positive and negative results of being labelled a family with multiple and complex needs.   The positives could be seen as agencies getting involved and providing support to help the family overcome their issues.   The family will feel more supported and work towards helping themselves independently.   The negatives could be that the family may be reluctant to engage with services due to previous bad experiences, they could also be...