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First Steps Early Intervention Community Psychology Service

First Steps Early Intervention Community Psychology Service,
Hackney Ark,
Downs Park Road,
E8 2FP
Telephone: 020 7683 4611


Who we are:

First Steps is an NHS psycology service for children and young people aged 0 – 18 years and their families.

This service works in partnership with other CAMHS - Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services

The aim of the service is to offer early help with any difficulties related to behaviour, emotions and relationships before they become more complicated or difficult to address.

Our team of 25 Family and Child Practitioners includes a:

  • Clinical Psychologist
  • Mental Health nurses
  • Assistant Psychologists
  • Administrators

Our Community Psychology Team run sessions from Children's Centres in Hackney and GP surgeries across Hackney to try to ensure there is easy access to the service. 

What we do:

The First Steps Team offers a range of services and can help parents and families with the following kinds of problems:

  • Sleeping problems
  • Tantrums
  • Fussy eating
  • Toilet training
  • Relationships with brothers and sisters and other children the same age
  • Difficulties with your relationship with your child
  • Disagreements in the family about parenting 
  • Worries following an illness or bereavement or issues that are affecting the whole family
  • Changes at home or school that have affected a child's emotions and behaviour

First Steps can also help children and young people with:

  • Fears, unhappiness, anger, anxiety or other difficult feelings
  • Being withdrawn, being aggressive, taking risks or other difficult behaviours
  • Feelings related to parental illness or health problems
  • Changes within the family e.g. Separation
  • Relationships with family, friends or teachers

For more session information see: CAMHS website events calendar 

Time / Date Details

Time of day


Session Information

Monday to Friday 9am - 5pm

Other Details



Who is eligible?

We work with children and adolescents:

  • Aged 0-18 years
  • With mild to moderate mental health difficulties
  • With a home address in Hackney or with a Hackney GP
  • Where the legally responsible parent/guardian has given consent for referral
  • Who have psychological difficulties which are likely to be helped by a short-term psychological intervention

Urgent safeguarding concerns should be directed to Children Social Care
Hackney phone number: 020 8356 5500
City phone number: 0208 356 2701

Advice about self-harm relating to children / young people can be sought from: Specialist CAMHS

First Steps are unable to accept referrals for families who are currently open to Children’s Social Care.

If you have concerns about the emotional well-being of a child who is open to Children’s Social Care, please discuss with their allocated Social Worker who will be able to co-ordinate appropriate support.

Referral required?


Referral Details

For more information on referral see here...

Referral contact information - CAMHS

Referral Process information - CAMHS

Self-referrals from young people, parents and families are accepted.

Please call 0207 683 4611 between 9.00am  – 5pm.

The service may not have a clinician who can talk to you imediately but someone will get back to you shortly after your call. 

Professionals supporting familes can refer using the Referral Form available via the website linked to this entry. 

CAMHS operates a "No wrong door" policy and works in partnership with other services to ensure the most suitable service is linked to the person making the referral. 

What to do if you have a complaint

Complaints procedure supported by PALS The service can also be contacted on: 020 8510 5113 Monday to Friday 9.30am to 5.30pm or via email:

Can parents & young people buy this service as part of their SEND personal budget?


How to Get Here

Buses: 38, 55, 56, 149, 243, 277                    

Train: Old Street, Hoxton

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Disclaimer-important information about the Hackney Local Offer

Hackney's Local Offer website is a free and impartial service provided by the London Borough of Hackney in partnership with the NHS, local education, health and community services. The information contained within the website is available for the purposes of identifying services and provision that may be available to children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities.

This information does not represent a recommendation or an endorsement of a Service or Provider and neither does the London Borough of Hackney or its partners make any representations or warranties as to the accuracy of the information. Anyone seeking to use or access a service or provision is responsible for undertaking their own checks to determine the suitability and fitness for purpose of that service and provision. In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including, without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damages whatsoever arising from use or loss of use of data or profits arising out of or in connection with the use of the Hackney Local Offer.

Some providers will be registered and inspected by external agencies, such as Ofsted or the Care Quality Commission. Anyone working with children and young people will be required to have appropriate Disclosure and Barring Service Check (the replacement for the Criminal Record Check), safeguarding policies and insurance in place, which they should make available to you on request.

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