Families First

families first logo

What service does the Families First team provide?

Families First provides an intensive systemic therapeutic service and was set up fifteen years ago. The team’s experience of working with high-risk families has led to the development of an intensive systemic therapeutic service. This service addresses the multitude of issues affecting families including relational, mental health and addiction issues. The service also incorporates trauma-informed therapies for both the young person and their parents and now facilitates working with younger children. As a systemic therapeutic service, we recognise and comprehend the impact that trauma and attachment disorders have had on families attending our service.

Families First provides an evidence-based integrated service and combines family systemic therapy with individual psychotherapy and simultaneously address both the relational and individual complex issues affecting families.

The Families First team aims to:

Improve family functioning and problem-solving

Reduce trauma symptoms

Reduce problem externalising and internalising behaviours

Build family-based protective factors

Reduce out of home placements/ support Foster Care placements

Improve mental health

Young people and their families were provided with an intensive family support service by Families First in 2022

Our Acheivements

Independent research conducted by the Families First team from 2011 – 2014 on the effectiveness of our service showed statistically and clinically significant improvements were achieved by the young people and their families who participated with an extremely low (7%) dropout rate. We continue to maintain high engagement rates.

Families First has played an important role; in the aversion of out of home placements, maintaining foster care placements, the transition of children from residential care to foster care, and supporting the return of children from foster care to home. The service is tailored to meet the needs of each family.

Families First Areas

The service is available in the following Tusla areas:

  • Dublin South Central
  • Dublin South West, Kildare, West Wicklow
  • The Midlands


Please contact us; referrals to the service can be made by Tusla Child Protection and Welfare Services based in those areas.