Coronavirus, early years and childcare

To prevent the spread of coronavirus and in order to follow government guidelines, families should only attend a Children’s centre if they have been invited to do so.

Childcare during coronavirus

If you are a key worker or you have a vulnerable child, you can apply for childcare 

The department for education has clear information for childcare settings that remain open for key workers and vulnerable children.

Children's centres virtual activities

We have a range of virtual sessions and support around early speech, language and communication. You can join us via zoom or 121 phone calls. We also have information on how you can get your Healthy Start vitamins and vouchers, Bookstart baby packs and activities you can do while staying safe at home.

Training sessions 

We will be resuming some first aid courses and adult education courses in the Autumn term 2020.

Family Information Service


The Family Information Service (FIS) provides free, impartial information and advice on a variety of services for children and young people (from birth to 25 years old), parents and families.

The service operates a telephone helpline and drop-in service from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

The FIS provides an outreach service in a variety of settings and also at events.

The Childcare Act 2016 places a statutory duty on Tower Hamlets and other local authorities in the United Kingdom to provide information, advice and guidance. The Children and Families Act (March 2014) section 30 requires local authorities to publish a Local Offer.  It provides information about provisions they expect to see for children and young people in their area who have special educational needs.

The Local Offer

The local offer is an online resource that is available to everyone.  This online resource outlines information on services for children, young people and families in Tower Hamlets in one central place. It contains factsheets, useful links, videos as well as an online directory of services. The FIS managed and maintains the Local Offer.


  • Details on all registered childcare in Tower Hamlets, including childminders, pre-school play groups, before and after school clubs, holiday play schemes.
  • Childcare funding
  • A brokerage service for Family Information Officer to locate suitable childcare options to meet the needs of the child and family; communicate with childcare providers; provide support to find any funding that might be available for childcare.

Leisure and holiday activities

  • Suggestions of things to do and places to go and places to go at weekends and holiday periods.
  • Holiday activities for children and young people.
  • Parent and toddler groups, swimming classes, youth services, adventure playgrounds and libraries,

Parenting support

  • Parenting support, information and advice for mums, dads, lone parents, new parents and parents-to-be. Advice on how to access services/parenting skills..

Special educational needs and disabilities

Signposting and information on support for birth to 25-year-olds with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND)

Signposting to services available to you

  • Advice, information and support services
  • Children’s centres
  • Education
  • Health
  • Leisure and youth
  • Moving on post-16
  • Social care