Support setting up and running a forum

On this page you can find support on the day-to-day running of a parent carer forum, including advice on setting up a forum in your area.

Parent Carer Participation Handbook

The parent carer participation handbook [PDF] is useful for anyone involved in running a forum.

NB. Please note that this document is now several years old and whilst it still has many useful sections, we do have other more recent documents such as Managing Your Grant which is sent out when your grant application is approved, which are more up to date on finance and governance.

NB. If reading in Adobe interactive mode, press Esc key to get Menu bar to download document or print pages. 

If the interactive features are not working, make sure you have opened the document in Adobe.

The handbook includes information on all aspects of running a forum including:

  • Getting started, policies, governance
  • Finances including paying parents
  • Working as a team, managing conflict
  • Reaching and consulting with parents
  • Working with local authorities & health to improve  services

Co-production and campaigning guidance

The conditions of their grant mean that parent carer forums can't take part in campaign activity. However, that doesn't mean that forums can't support local and national campaigns with their knowledge and experience.

We've produced guidelines to explain how Contact supports campaign groups and parent carer forums, and to help parent carer forums find ways to work with local campaign groups

Find out more in our co-production and campaigning guidelines.

Templates for forums

Forums developing policies might find it it helpful to adapt these templates.

Governance documents

Other policies and procedures

Financial management

Further information on the Grant Application and Monitoring process can be found on the ' Parent carer participation grant and monitoring' page.

Examples of forum policies

Sheffield Parent carer Forum - financial policy [PDF]

Salford Family Forum - financial policy [PDF]