Family Start

ATWC’s Family Start programme is an early intervention home-visiting service that supports families across Auckland.

Programme Overview

Family Start is a free home-visiting service that focuses on improving children's overall wellbeing and safety with holistic and culturally responsive support. We accept referrals from when a mother is confirmed to be pregnant up until when baby is 12 months old. In exceptional circumstances, a child may be accepted into the program until two years of age and we are able to continue to work with a family until there child starts school.

The programme supports families who struggle with challenges or problems that put health, education and social outcomes for their children at risk. Our Family and Social Workers will walk alongside parents and caregivers and empower them to work through these challenges in meaningful and sustainable ways. ATWC currently delivers the Family Start programme in Otāhuhu, Auckland Central, Tāmaki, Glen Innes, Avondale, Sunnynook, Mairangi Bay and Forest Hill.


Once an ATWC Family Start worker has assessed a family, an individualised plan is put together identifying key areas where the family needs support.

The plan, which is reviewed and updated every three months, identifies goals for the family and the Family Start whanau worker to achieve together.  For example, it may include ways to interact or play with the child to help achieve developmental milestones, or the plan may include accessing other supports in the community eg budgeting, counselling, language classes, etc.’ 

Family Start is voluntary and requires families' consent. This supportive programme encourages families with young children to access a range of welfare, health and other services they may need.

Who Can refer to family start

  • Lead maternity carers – midwifes, general practitioners, and obstetricians.
  • Plunket.
  • Hospital maternity services – including neo-natal units.
  • Well-Child providers –all providers contracted to deliver the national Well-Child Tamariki Ora programme i.e. vaccinators, dental therapists, hearing and vision testers.
  • Any providers, including Oranga Tamariki and other government departments, who work with families and recognise the need for referral.
  • Self-referral.

More Information

To learn more about Family Start, please contact our main office