Common Assessment Framework


Common assessment framework (CAF), Service Allocation Provision (SAM) and Family Support Model (FSM)


Common assessment framework (CAF)


The Common Assessment Framework (CAF) Team works with professionals in Warrington who work with children and young people aged 0 – 19yrs.

The role of the team is to support professionals working with a child or young person when they undertake an assessment of what help a child, young person or their family may need from services in Warrington. This Assessment is called the Common Assessment Framework.

The team keeps records of children who are working with a professional to ensure that if a child or young person becomes known to a new service the professionals can share information (with the child's or carer's consent) to ensure they provide a co-ordinated service.

The team are responsible for the development and implementation of the Warrington Family Support Model (FSM). This model aims to ensure that children, young people or their families can request help from local services and that they get a co-ordinated response from professionals working in schools, health, social care, voluntary agencies etc. When a child or family is involved with several services the team will also ensure that a young person or a family have a Lead Professional supporting them.

The CAF Team is also responsible for running all Service Allocation Meetings (SAM) across the town. SAMs provide practitioners with the chance to seek advice from a range of colleagues about the services available to support specific children/young people. In order to discuss a case at SAM, practitioners must first complete a CAF assessment and receive consent to share information. Once the CAF is in place, the CAF team should be notified and a SAM request form sent to the CAF team, the team will then work with professionals to ensure that the right CAFs are discussed in the right areas. Someone from the SAM will be asked to feedback the outcome of the meeting to the child/young person or family.

While the service is predominately for professionals, children, young people and families can contact us directly for advice and information on how to access children's services or get a lead             

In Warrington, we know that children and their families have different types of need. A wide range of services are working together with children, young people and their families to meet these needs. This way of working is called the Family Support Model and it aims to offer 'early help' to those who need it, when they need it.



Where can I get help?

If you would like help, there are many people around who can talk to you and listen to what you think would be helpful. They will write down what you talk about on a CAF assessment and then you will get a copy of the form.

CAF stands for the Common Assessment Framework. It involves listening to you to find out what help you need and talking about what is working well in your life.

Based on what you tell us and what help you would like, a plan is put together so that professionals can work together to make sure you get the right sort of help.

By talking to people you know and trust, they can find the best support for you early on, before any problems become bigger.

Plus, if you agree, the CAF can be shown to other workers so that you'll only have to explain your story once rather than lots of times to different people. Only if you agree, the CAF assessment will be shared with other people who could help you and together, everyone can work to support you and/or your family.


Those people who know about CAF and who could give you more information or advice are:                                                                      

School staff such as teachers and learning mentors

Health professionals such as Midwives, Health Visitors and School Nurses

Children's Centre staff

Family Outreach Workers

Youth Workers

And many more.