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Planned telephone support for disadvantaged parents in North Wales: perceptions of service users

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This paper draws on the findings of a qualitative evaluation to examine user perceptions of a planned telephone support intervention based in a disadvantaged area in North Wales. Telephone support services are tailored differentially to offer information, advice and/or counselling on a crisis-led or planned-intervention basis. Research focusing on telephone support, for the most part (and particularly in the UK) has examined crisis-led as opposed to planned support services. The findings of our study resonate with earlier research findings about telephone support that suggest provision of non-visual support in social care can overcome some practical and financial difficulties for users with little discernible loss to their experience of satisfaction with the service. In addition, the paper suggests that planned support may provide a valuable service to users who are most disadvantaged and marginalized and who have found traditional forms of support unsatisfactory. For such users, planned telephone support can offer one-to-one communication tailored to specific client needs. Moreover, it can enable the development of user trust in the service which empowers users to operationalize strategies in the context of a reliable, sustained, unthreatening (and thus minimal risk) relationship.

Keywords: disadvantage; evaluation; parents and children; qualitative; telephone support

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Principal Lecturer, Social Inclusion Research Unit, University of Wales North East Wales Institute, Wrexham, LL11 2AW, UK, 2: Research Assistant, Social Inclusion Research Unit, University of Wales North East Wales Institute, Wrexham, LL11 2AW, UK, 3: Independent Researcher,

Publication date: November 1, 2007


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