Family assistant – one form to support family - Poland


Family assistant is a person who supports the family for some time in order to overcome life difficulties in a balanced way, help with care and upbringing.  His main task is to support family in fulfilling care and education  functions.  He  motivates  the  family  to:  work  on  themselves,  make  changes,  and  achieve certain harmony.

Family assistantship consists in individualized work in the family, with the family, for the family (on its behalf), with the dominance of work with the family. The characteristic features of assisting are the individualization of work resulting from a small number of recipients, adaptation to specific groups of beneficiaries and their real needs, providing the possibility of directing dedicated support to tchem.

The help of a family assistant is free of charge. If a given family decides that it needs the support of a family assistant, it may report to the Social Welfare Center with a request for one to be assigned. The family may benefit from the support of a family assistant, regardless of the income. It is important to give specific reasons.

Ambition and goals

The function of a family assistant includes the function of psycho-emotional support, diagnostic and monitoring, caring, advisory, mediation, educational, motivating and activating, and coordination of activities aimed at the family.

The scope of tasks of a family assistant covers four areas: direct work with parents, direct work with children, indirect activities carried out for the benefit of the child and family, organization of one's own work workshop. 

The main goal of assistantships is to improve the caring and educational skills, running a household, dealing with everyday situations of parents or guardians of children. As a result, people receiving help should regain control over their own lives, which allows them to be independent and to fulfill the role of a parent in such a way that the family environment is conducive to the safety and development of children. This effect is possible to achieve, with the participation of the family at every stage of the methodical activity: from the initial assessment, through the preparation of the work plan and its implementation, to the final assessment, adapting the work to the possibilities and context of the family life and through small steps. The family assistant supports the family for some time so that in the future it can independently overcome life's difficulties, especially in the care and upbringing of children.

Target group 

Families experiencing difficulties in fulfilling their care and educational functions (regardless of their financial situation): 

- families whose children are currently in foster care, but there is a chance of their return to the biological family,

- families at risk of placing children in foster care,

- families with periodic difficulties in fulfilling the care and educational function.

Special help is also directed to women or families in which a seriously ill child will be born. Women whose baby may die during pregnancy, childbirth, or after giving birth.

Evaluation – lessons learned

The role of the assistant is extremely important, he is the person who takes up the job. It is noticeable that the assistant is positively assessed by the families themselves and working with him is helpful.

The assistant is closest to families in need, acting as a link between them and the institutions and organizations that can help them. The work of an assistant is difficult, absorbing, and exhausting due to the need to carry out many tasks for the family and taking care of its proper functioning in society - but it brings results.


A family assistant who properly understands his role strengthens the family with minor children by using its internal and external resources. He works at the place of residence of the family or indicated by it. Conducts preventive and supportive activities based on the assistant relationship. His role in the family support system is important, because the effect of his work is that the family in crisis achieves a basic level of life stability, which will enable it to create an optimal and safe educational environment for children. A family that performs its functions correctly will enable the proper development of offspring, which will result in a reduction in the scale of social problems in the future.

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