Evaluating the role of the Sure Start Plus Adviser in providing integrated support for pregnant teenagers and young parents
This paper offers a descriptive evaluation of the role and performance of the Sure Start Plus Adviser in providing integrated support for pregnant teenagers and young parents, and focuses on their interprofessional working. The study, based upon interviews and questionnaires with advisers, pregnant and parenting teenagers and mainstream professionals, was conducted within five Local Authorities in the north-east of England. Findings show differences in how the role was undertaken and in terms of its impact within different authorities. The principal contribution was perceived as providing one-to-one advice, personal and emotional support and by networking within agencies to help change the attitudes and role of mainstream professionals, for example, in midwifery, housing and Connexions. The conclusion affirms the adviser as a role model to inform current developments towards creating lead professional status and integrated packages of support for teenage parents.