Forum resources

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This page contains recorded webinars, training videos and the latest reports on parent carer participation.

In this article

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Families in Partnership (FIP)Our Coproduction Journey in Worcestershire. As part of Coproduction Week 2020, we hear from Sally Keane, Chair of Families in Partnership about how the parent carer forum has developed since they were set up in 2017. We hear how working together with partners they have developed a coproduction culture in Worcestershire  and the difference this has made to families of disabled children. Download the associated presentation.

How associate support helped embed coproduction in Herefordshire.   As part of Coproduction Week 2020, in this short webinar we hear from Max Bassett (Vice Chair of Parent Carer Voice Herefordshire) ;Kate Rowe (Contact Associate) and Sue Mennear (Regional Parent Participation Adviser) about how associate support helped embed coproduction and a new way of working in Herefordshire.  Download the associated presentation.

Co-production, Campaigning & the Independence of Parent Carer Forums presented by Mrunal Sisodia NNPCF Co-Chair, Kate Hurn and Sue Mennear, Contact, with contribution from Carol Kelsey (Co-ordinator at Herts Parent Carer Involvement.) The webinar includes; How parent carer forums can work with campaign groups for better outcomes for families, What parent carer forums can and can’t do to support campaigns, A good practice case study from Herts Parent Carer Involvement about the Nascot Lawn Campaign… and much more. Download the associated presentation.  Other related documents include the recently updated Co-production and Campaigning Guidance , along with overview of HPCI for professionalsHPCI statement on campaigning, a short case study about Nascot Lawn.

Contact is a member of the National Alliance for Partnership Working which has developed a co-production framework based on Genuine Partnerships’ Quality Indictors of Co-production and Inclusive Practice. The Quality Indicators draw on the four principles of co-production which measure how Local Areas are working and help identify next steps on the journey to embedding a culture of co-production in working with families of children and young people with SEND.

Watch this co-production video or watch the subtitled version, where forums, local authorities, health providers and commissioners share their experiences of working in co-production and how it helped them improve services.

Adapting to Covid19

Reducing Isolation and Increasing Wellbeing in your Parent Carer Community – webinar in partnership with Rotherham PCF, Lewisham PCf and Suffolk Parent Carer Network. Promoting creative thinking about how forums can make best use of the DfE grant during the Covid 19 restrictions to keep their forums going within their capacity. Download the presentation from the session.

Building Your Resilience During Covid-19 presented by Kate Walters & Julie Singleton this webinar looks at what resilience is and isn’t, understand you stress signs and when to step back, whilst exploring approaches to help you look after yourself and much more. Download the presentation from the session along with an FAQ document.

Adapting to Covid 19 – a webinar presented by Ruth Hobbs for Parent Carer Forums.  This webinar recording aims to help forums adapt to the challenges of COVID-19 and changing restrictions, ensure you and your forum active members only take on what you are realistically able to do, help you and your forum think about easy ways to keep the forum active in your community and much more! Download the presentation from the session.

‘Podcast excerpt from the webchat with Rotherham PCF, Contact and the DfE.’ Rotherham PCF, Contact and the DfE met with a small number of forum representatives for an interactive chat  generating ideas for outreach and virtual meetings as well as discussions around influencing local decisions during the Covid 19 crisis.  This podcast is an excerpt from the webcast but excluding the interactive webchat aspect of the discussion.  Please also see Rotherham PCF’s policies page relating to their virtual offer referred to in the session

Community Matters Podcasts

Community Matters recently ran a live webchat for parent carer forums on Operational Issues during Covid-19. We recorded the chat and have split them into useful sections. You can hear the excerpts below:

Grant Schemes and Fundraising – the Covid-19 Response

Some forums (and organisations supporting forums) are actively involved in the Covid19 response either by signposting to information and support; or in some cases providing direct support services to families. This podcast talks about some of the options available to fund this type of activity.

Grants during Covid-19 Business Rates and Business Relief

Some forums with office bases may be interested in finding out about support for businesses during Covid19.

Charity decision- making during Covid-19

Forums who are needing to make important decisions or wish to hold EGMs/ AGMs during the pandemic may find the following podcast useful.

If you have any questions please sign up for your complimentary subscription to Community Matters Advice and Information service by emailing Heather on and an adviser will be pleased to help.  If you need further information about your forum’s complimentary subscription to Community Matters please contact your parent carer participation adviser

Webinars to help you run your forum

Grants online learning session 2021‘ guides you through the grant application and monitoring process providing helpful hints on how best to complete your application and monitoring forms and outlining any changes that have been made to the process this year. See a recording of the session on YouTube. The Grant’s teams Rachel King also shared a number of notes during the session which attendees found useful, you can also download these notes.

Being a Parent Rep – Representing Your Parent Carer Community: learn about the role of a parent representative. Download the presentation from the webinar along with the Hand Out – Key Parent Carer Participation Legislation and Q&A document.

Grant Monitoring 2019-20 and Applications 2020-21‘ guides forums through all they need to know about the grant application and monitoring process this year. See the FAQ document from the webinar. Please note that the application section of the webinar starts at 22 minutes and 45 seconds.

‘Nuts and Bolts: A library of resources to run your forum.’ This webinar is a one stop shop of all the resources you need to run a forum. Delivered by Lara Roberts and Fazilla Amide, Previously a Chair and currently a Chair, both Contact Associates and part of the NNPCF. Download the presentation from the webinar.

Using the media to reach more parent carers and amplify your forum’s message‘ delivered by Elaine Bennett – Press & Comms Manager at Contact and Richard Hobbs Communications lead at NNPCF and Steering group member at Somerset Parent Carer Forum. Download the presentation from the webinar along with a further information document.

Using technology to Support Forum Activity‘ Presented by Ruth Hobbs of Somerset Parent Carer Forum. This webinar recording will help to; Build your skills and confidence to use different apps etc; Help you to learn how other forums are maximizing their capacity by using a range of technology; Help you to save time, money and energy and Demonstrate how this can help you run a forum that covers a wide geographical area and/or to reach Seldom Heard parent carers. Download the presentation from the webinar.

Fundraising‘ – presented by Jane Burns Contact’s Director of Fundraising & Marketing . This webinar recording is an introduction on how to raise funds for Parent carer forums. Download the presentation from the webinar.

Staffing and Workforce Development – Getting your HR right presented by Lorraine Walker – Associate Consultant and Carla Garraway – Darlington Parent Carer Forum. A webinar recording to help make the most of the people power in your forum – whether people are paid or unpaid. Download the presentation from the webinar.

Understanding Legal Structures‘ Presented by Helen Rice of Advising Communities. A webinar recording to help enable listeners to build their understanding of different types of legal structures and implications for committee members. Download the presentation from the webinar.

Getting ready for the new General Data Protection Regulations‘ presented by Kobie Cadle and Stephanie Linham from Advising Communities. A webinar to support parent carer forums to meet data protection laws and prepare for the new General Data Protection Regulations which come into effect from May 2018. Download the presentation from the webinar.

‘Understanding and resolving conflict‘ presented by Jacqueline Wye, Contact a Family Associate. The webinar looks at the different types of conflict, behaviours that raise the level of conflict and behaviours that help diffuse it, strategies to minimise conflict, managing conflict raised via social media effectively and much more. Download the presentation from the webinar and see a YouTube learning video Managing conflict for forums and associated handout. Download further resources around conflict management styles and minimising conflict in a committee and in forums.

Presenting your forum‘ with Fazilla, chair of Enfield Parent Carer Forum, and Sharon and Jean from Warrington Parent Carer Forum. This webinar gives forums a fresh approach to thinking about the image they want to present to their networks and partners. It includes innovative ideas from other forums and top tips from the Contact a Family head of marketing. Download the presentation from the Webinar.

Good practice in Volunteer Management – an introduction to the four Rs (recruitment, retention, recognition, reward.)‘ Presented by Gethyn Williams with good practice examples from Leonie Pollinger from South Gloucestershire Parents and Carers. The presentation associated with the webinar will be available shortly.

‘Succession planning and handovers‘ with NNPCF Steering Group member Lara Roberts and Bonnie Arpino from Kent Parent Carer Forum. This webinar looks at developing succession plans for an effective and positive handover.

‘Safeguarding for parent carer forums.’ Sue North presented this essential guide to safeguarding disabled children and vulnerable adults for parent carer forums. This webinar recording covers: definitions of children, vulnerable adults and types of abuse; key legislation relating to safeguarding; role of parent carer forums in relation to safeguarding; key components of safeguarding policies and procedures, and much more. Download the presentation from the day [PDF].

‘Using social media responsibly‘ presented by Sharon Smith, Contact associate, Amelia Stubberfield, Contact a Family digital engagement officer, and Claire Watts, chair of Bexley Voice.

‘Roles and responsibilities of the chair, secretary and other forum committee members.’ This webinar assists parent carer forums with improving their governance and enhancing decision making within their forums.

Role of the Treasurer‘ with Catherine Ratcliffe and Louise of Rotherham Forum. The webinar explains: the roles and responsibilities of the treasurer and the steering group/committee, how to operate a basic accounts system, how to carry out bank reconciliations and handle petty cash systems and muc more. Download the presentation [PDF] associated with this recording along with the following useful supporting documents: 

‘ Why do parent carer forums need a financial control policy?‘ View the presentation associated with this webinar.

Webinars to help you develop and grow your forum

‘Engaging the Seldom Heard: learning through shared experiences.‘ In this webinar Kulwinder Bola Chair of Luton Forum shares how the forum in Luton, and others in the Eastern region, have set about reaching out to some of our seldom heard communities, and how having a more diverse forum in Luton has helped enhance and cement the work then do.

‘Partnership working with support groups.’ This webinar demonstrates the positive benefits that support groups can bring to forums and help you to build strong partnerships, strengthened links and increased engagement.

Reach out a little further‘ presented by trainer Lorraine Pattison along with Steph and Jacqui from Bolton Parent Carer Consortium. This webinar looks at building an inclusive and credible forum. 

‘Making Your Case’, presented by Barbara Wilson, Contact a Family associate, and Kulwinder Bola, Chair of Luton Parent Carer Forum. This webinar enables forums to use a range of evidence gathering tools to effectively influence commissioners, planners and providers.

Building Active Members‘ with Sue Mennear and Leonie from South Gloucestershire Parent Carer Forum. The webinar covers: analysing your forum’s current strengths and weaknesses in building active members; learn what’s worked from forums across the country; explore behaviours that build or prevent participation of new members and much more.

Laws affecting families of disabled children and other useful information for parent carer forums

Understanding School Funding Webinar recording – This session covers; The legal framework, How decisions are made Understanding terms like funding formulae, top ups (including banding) and blocks! Why partnership working is important in SEN funding SEN funding implications for educational settings.  Download the presentation from the session along with the HPCI case study and Position statement referenced in the session.

SEND Support – what does it mean for your children, presented by Alex Grady, Education Development Officer, nasen, Whole School SEND project officer. This webinar covers: SEND legislation and what it means for your child; The SEND process in schools – identification and support; How should parents be involved etc. Download the presentation from the webinar.

‘IASS Update 2019’ Webinar Recording presented by Daisy Russell. This webinar includes: An update on the new IASS Minimum Standards. Impact of the minimum standards and the future for small IASS services Funding for IASS services. How forums can work with their local services. What to do when things go wrong. Download the presentation from the webinar.

‘Local Area Inspections’ is led by Lea Pickerill – CQC Lead Children’s Services Inspector, Gareth Ashcroft – DfE, Lead for local authority accountability and André Imich – DfE SEND Professional Adviser and provides an opportunity for Parent Carer Forums to hear more about the SEND inspection process. Download the presentation from the webinar. Also see a link to EHC journeys resources referred to in the webinar.

‘Transport’ presented by Stuart Hall Strategic Director of Wiltshire Parent Carer Council and Kay Henry of Parent Carer Cornwall. This webinar looks at legislation, what does the picture look like across the country, challenges and pressures on LA budgets, what else could be done and much more. Download the presentation from the webinar.

‘DfE/IPSEA – SEND decision making and the law.’ See all the resources from the day.

‘Decision making for adults lacking capacity‘ presented by Helen Smith Solicitor with Irwin Mitchell LLP. This webinar covers an introduction to the Mental Capacity Act 2005, the Court of Protection and the legal framework in place from a health and welfare perspective and much more. Download the presentation from the webinar along with further information on the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and the Court of Protection

‘Preparing for Adulthood’ presented by Julie Pointer NDTIs children and young people’s lead. This webinar covers the four PfA life outcome areas: Employment, Independent Living, Friends, relationships and community inclusion & The best possible health Download the presentation and FAQ and resources document from the webinar.

Continuing Healthcare’ presented by Charlotte Wilson Solicitor with Irwin Mitchell LLP, focusing on: Entitlement to continuing healthcare, Assessing eligibility, the appeal process and common problem. Download the presentation from the webinar.

‘ CQC and Ofsted inspections‘ with NNPCF National Rep Carol Kelsey and Fazilla Amide from Enfield Parent Carer Forum. Download the presentation from the day, along with the further resources handout [DOC].

‘SEND Consultation: Parent Carer Forums’ delivered by Ofsted. This webinar looks at the new SEND inspection framework proposals and how parent carer forums can support their parent members to contribute to this important public consultation.

Short Breaks Services, the journey so far..‘ This webinar explains: what short breaks services are; responsibilities of statutory authorities; how parent carer forums can be involved; and useful resources. Download the presentation from the short breaks webinar [PDF].

‘Using the law to challenge cuts to short break services – Steve Broach [PDF].’ View the presentation [PDF] associated with this session. Please note that although Local Authorities will be setting their budgets for 2015/15 in February, the content of the webinar will remain relevant both to the ways in which any proposed budget cuts are implemented and to budgets for future years, which are likely to see further proposed reductions in funding for children’s services including short breaks.

‘What parent carer forums need to know about the law to influence the provision of post-16 education and post-16 transport’. View the presentation associated with this webinar.

Social care review

‘The Children’s Social Care Review – “The Case for Change” online learning session recording. This session is presented by NNPCF Co-chair Mrunal Sisodia and Josh McAllister the independent chair of the review. Download the presentation from the learning session along with the survey results taken as part of the session.

‘Integrated Care Systems – what they mean for SEND and parent carer forums’ online learning session recording. This session explores the Integrated Care System and the wide ranging impact on the way in which services for children with SEND are commissioned and delivered. NNPCF co-chair Mrunal Sisodia and Contact Strategic Health Lead Amanda Elliot step through the planned changes and what they might mean for SEND services and parent carer forums. Download the presentation from the learning session along with the survey results taken as part of the session.

Working with strategic health partners for forums

NHS / NNPCF admissions avoidance for children and young people – what is the NHS doing and how can pcfs help? The webinar recroding: explains how existing policies such as Care Education and Treatment Reviews and the Dynamic Support Register are critical in this period, describes a new programme of work to ensure Admission Avoidance through NHS England and Improvement regions and much more. Download the presentation from the webinar.

NHS England learning disability and Autism Key working pilot. As a part of the NHS Long Term Plan, the Learning Disability and/or Autism Programme are looking to commission 14 key working pilots. They hope that parent carer forums will be a key part of these pilots. This webinar provides a briefing for parent carer forums on keyworking and plans for the pilots. Download the presentation from the webinar.

Learning Disability and Autism in the NHS Long Term Plan. Presented by Mrunal Sisodia NNPCF Co-Chair & Mary Busk NHS England. This webinar is an introduction to the work of the learning disability and autism work stream including, Reducing inpatient care, Community support, Key working, Learning disability health checks, Eyes, Ears and Teeth and Reasonable adjustments. Download the presentation from the webinar.

What does the long term plan mean for parent carer forums? Presented by Mrunal Sisodia NNPCF Co-Chair & East of England Steering Group Member. This webinar is an overview of what the long term plan contains for children and young people with SEND and their families and  an outline of how the long term plan will be implemented and how parent carer forums can seek to be involved. Download the presentation from the webinar.

Learning Disability GP Annual Health Checks for over 14’s‘ presented by Lynn Hoppenbrouwers, Contact Strategic Health Lead and Rosalind Luff of Bromley Parent Voice. This webinar covers; What are GP annual health checks and what is the learning disability register, who should be on the register, what is an annual health check and why it is important, what to expect from an annual health check, health Action Plans, what to do if this doesn’t happen. Download the presentation from the Webinar.

Transforming Care‘ presented by Sarah Thomas, Contact Associate and Maureen Morris Co-Chair of the NNPCF and North East Regional Representative, this webinar gives an overview of transforming care in England including;The impact that forums can have in working with health and local authority partners in their local area,How forums can build partnerships with Schools and local parents and carers,The future – looking at the new Transformation Programme and more. Download the presentation from the Webinar.

‘ Engaging with Health – how Contact can help Parent Carer Forums‘ presented by Lynn Hoppenbrouwers Contact Strategic Health Lead. Download the presentation from the Webinar

Transforming Care for children and young people with learning disabilities, autism or both‘ presented by Mary Busk, NNPCF Steering Group member for London and Sue North, the children’s social care and education adviser for the Transforming Care programme. Download the presentation from the Webinar

‘First steps towards understanding and working with the health system.’ With Contact a Family associate Anna Gill and Rachel Trueman from South Gloucestershire Parent Carer Forum, this webinar includes: a bird’s eye view of how the health system is structured; an introduction to commissioning within the health system; identifying key levers for change within health and much more. Download the presentation from the day along with further resources, information on marketing your forum, an example report from South Gloucestershire forum and a Q&A document.

‘Improving health services for disabled children’. View the presentation associated with this webinar. Read the Q&A from this session.

‘ Participation and Health – Next Steps‘. View the presentation associated with this webinar.

Developing Regional Parent Carer Forum Networks

Developing your region‘ for parent carer forums, presented by Mrunal Sisodia, East of England NNPCF Rep and Kulwinder Bola, Chair of Luton Forum and the East of England region. The webinar looks at: the important and developing role of regional networks in our money saving climate; key strategic regional activity to be involved in; how to set-up your region – governance, structures, staffing, volunteers and polices; and much more. Download the presentation from the webinar [PDF].

NNPCF Webinars

Webinar recording NNPCF strategy update. NNPCF co-chairs present a webinar to update members on the strategy of the NNPCF ahead of our Annual General Meeting in November. Download the presentation from the webinar.

Webinar recording NNPCF strategy 2: The future of the NNPCF. This webinar recording cover the NNPCF’s proposals for their organisation’s structure and how you can have your say. The webinar was presented by NNPCF co-chairs Maureen Morris and Mrunal Sisodia. Download the presentation from the webinar along with the conference motions FAQ.

Webinar recording NNPCF strategy update – Our vision, mission, objectives and priorities. This webinar will bring you up to date with where the NNPCF are and shares the proposed strategy for the next 2-3 years, presented by Mrunal Sisodia and Lara Roberts of the NNPCF steering group . Download the presentation from the webinar.

Useful information for forums

Payments to parent carers

guide for forums to the issues that parent carer forums need to consider when reimbursing parent carers’ expenses, remunerating parent carers for their time, including offering honorariums or gifts as a thank you. The guide was kindly produced by the Low Income Tax Reform Group (LITRG) specifically for parent carer forums.

Cyber Security

Information and tips for forums on cyber security

This is not intended to be exhaustive but we hope you find it a useful starting point.

Resources from special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) decision making and the law workshops

In January/February 2017, workshops were held across the nine regions to assist local authorities in interpreting and applying the legal requirements of the Children and Families Act 2014 to some of the key decision points

The workshops were led by the Department for Education SEND Adviser team and IPSEA, facilitated by Mott MacDonald. All resources that were either used or referred to across these workshops are now available to download on the Mott MacDonald website.

If you have any queries about the SEND decision making and the law workshops, please direct these to or call the helpline on 0207 651 0308


Parent Carer Participation Annual Reports

SEND Survey Reports

Other Reports

Learning on YouTube

Summary versions of training sessions held across the country are available on YouTube. Some of the sessions also have supporting documentation.

  • Videos on law and disabled children – Barrister Steve Broach gives the legal context on school transport, school funding, short breaks, personal budgets and direct payments, recent health developments, welfare reform, housing benefit and council tax benefit, the children and families bill for parent forums.

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