ABOUT THE NATIONAL UNIT

FDAC is the Family Drug and Alcohol Court. It offers an alternative form of care proceedings for children put at risk of significant harm by parental substance misuse and other difficulties. What’s different about FDAC is that the court, assisted by a specialist team, uses a problem-solving approach to provide a comprehensive response to the problems that have led to care proceedings.

The FDAC National Unit was established in April 2015. Its aim is to extend the benefits of the FDAC approach to more children and families, by supporting the growth of new FDACs that reflect the intervention model that research has found to be promising.

By the end of its first year, the National Unit helped to establish FDACs in 12 new local authority areas, nurtured interest in the model in a range of other potential sites, and established mechanisms for evaluating the progress being made across all FDAC sites in achieving the desired outcomes for children and families.

The National Unit is committed to supporting the continued delivery and development of the FDAC service. It provides bespoke expertise to sites via: consultancy and guidance, facilitating shared learning and networking events, sustainability planning, research and evaluation tools, specialist training and skills development.

Our longer-term aim is to build the case for wider reform of the justice and social care systems. In particular, we want the FDAC National Unit to change the way children and families experience care proceedings.

Funding

This year 2016-17 the National Unit has received funding from a number of different sources: Department for Education and Ministry of Justice, to enable us to offer continued support throughout the year to existing FDACs and to continue to support the national roll out of FDACs.

The work of the National Unit in 2015-16 was funded by the Innovation Programme of the Department for Education (DfE).