Families First was originally established through the St Andrews Baptist Church. For 19 years we were known as FFSA, now we are more commonly known as Families First. The Baptist Church had noticed that families in the local area needed some extra help and support during times of difficulty. We were formally established in December 2001. In the beginning, Families First delivered its services to the St Andrews area and surrounding villages; working with primary schools falling in with the catchment area of Madras College, based here in St Andrews.
Over the years we have developed our range of services and support which has benefitted many children and their families throughout north east Fife. Families First are very proud of the Christian values and beliefs on which it was founded. These values shared by many people of other beliefs provide the basis of our work with service users, their families, and the communities we work in. We value the contribution of everyone who works with Families First whether directly with service users or indirectly through fundraising, administration and transport. Everything Families First does is influenced by a core set of values:
Demand for our services and the support offered by Families First has continued to increase year on year as the organisation has become more widely known and respected in North East Fife and beyond. We continue to develop and meet the needs of the community through reviews, regular internal and external meetings, through networking, research and development, by having an open door policy and listening to the people we support. Today we offer our services to children aged 5-16 years, living in North East Fife. We follow guidance from the UNCRC and Getting it Right for Every Child (GIRFEC) and the well-being indicators within the guidance.
We work with children who have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders (ADHD), various learning disabilities, social and emotional problems, mental health issues, caring responsibilities, being looked after away from their family, low self-esteem, medical problems, and come from low income families. Isolation can be a significant challenge to the children we work with not only due to their personal circumstances but also because of the rural location we serve.
In June 2016 we were honoured to receive The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service – an MBE for voluntary sector organisations.