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Early Intervention Framework for Children and Young People's Mental Health and Wellbeing

Children’s mental health and wellbeing is rooted in their relationships with those most significant to them, both at home and in their wider world. Relationships shape children’s experience of emotional safety and their resilience as they move through times of adversity. However, additional early support may be needed for their mental health and wellbeing. Children and families need the right help at the right time. The Early Intervention Framework provides a database of evidence-based prevention and early intervention approaches designed to improve the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people. This resource provides opportunity to be methodical and effective in both service commissioning and provision. Having taken care to listen to families and communities, a specific offer can be targeted to needs, circumstances and context. Interventions in this Early Intervention Framework may be one strand among a range of practical and emotional supports, in delivery of which there are cornerstones and common threads. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) underpins our national practice model, Getting it right for every child (GIRFEC). This encourages a holistic understanding of a child’s wellbeing needs in context. For all practitioners, a trauma informed approach applies (NES Trauma Training Framework). All services have a collaborative part to play in fulfilling the Promise Scotland has made to care experienced children and families (The Promise).

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Background information

Background information about the development of the Early Intervention Framework.

Background information
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How to use the resource

An overview of the range of information contained within the Early Intervention Framework and how to access and utilise the different elements of the resource.

Understand the resource
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Exploring the interventions

Explore the interventions by keywords and/or by using the filters.

Explore the interventions

Learn how the Early Intervention Framework can support services in Scotland

The Early Intervention Framework (EI Framework) aims to increase the effective implementation of evidence-based early intervention and prevention approaches to improve the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people. It has been designed to support services to make fully informed decisions about what interventions might be implementable and sustainable for their specific context.

The EI Framework includes:

  • A searchable database of evidence-based mental health and wellbeing interventions for children and young people (from the antenatal period- 18 years)
  • Comprehensive information for each intervention included in the database across six key dimensions of implementation (dimensions are based on the Hexagon Tool, developed by the National Implementation Research Network (NIRN) which can be downloaded here)
  • Guided questioning to support critical thinking and decision making regarding selecting and implementing interventions
  • A self-assessment tool to enable consideration and evaluation of unique local implementation contexts

  • A rating system for the six implementation dimensions with prepopulated scores for Programme Indicators (Usability, Supports, Evidence) and the ability for the user to self-rate the Implementing Site Indicators (Fit, Capacity, Need) based on their local context


Demonstration of how to use the resource

Here you will find a demonstration video of how to use the resource; for a written description of how to use the resource click here.

The Early Intervention Framework for Children and Young Peoples Mental Health and Wellbeing was officially launched at the end of March 2021. For those who were not able to attend the official launch of the Framework a recording of the event can be accessed here.  


Learn More About the Hexagon Indicators

Find out more about the Early Intervention Framework in this 40 minute recorded webinar.

Here you will hear more information about:

  • The 6 indicators of the Hexagon Model used to describe each of the interventions included in the Early Intervention Framework
  • How the 3 Programme Indicators, Usability, Supports & Evidence, were rated
  • How the guided questions within the Self-Assessment section of the Framework help the user rate the Implementing Site Indicators; Capacity, Need & Fit



Learn more about the resources available to support the use of the Early Intervention Framework



This 30-minute recorded webinar takes you through 3 different resources available to support your effective use of the Hexagon Tool. The Hexagon Tool was used to structure all the entries in the Early Intervention Framework for Children & Young People’s Mental Health and Wellbeing. The resources can help you prepare for use of the Early Intervention Framework and gather the relevant people, and information, ready to rate all three of the Site Indicators and make decisions about the interventions you may wish to invest in. The three resources described are:


  • Stakeholder engagement guide (download here) – helps you identify who your stakeholders are, ensuring you engage those who have the best understanding of the needs of the population and community you serve.
  • Root Cause Analysis - Five Whys tool (download here) –helps you develop a deeper understanding of what the need of your population is by exploring what the cause of the challenges you population is experiencing may be.



  • Programme Inventory Tool (download here) –can be used to systematically record interventions offered in the local community and examine how well a new offer might fit with those already available. This tool also helps you identify gaps in provision, or identify where there are already effective interventions meeting a community’s needs. 


Case studies

Here you will find case studies detailing the experience of services implementing interventions from around Scotland.

Explore case studies