STAR RATING: 3/5
Run by: The Mental Health Foundation
Who is it for? Professionals, carers and 16-25 year olds who have been in contact with mental health services who want to share their views.
Highlight: This website has a number of ways for visitors to voice their opinions about mental health services.
This is mainly through an online discussion forum but you can also submit stories of your own experiences for publication on the site. Those that are already up there are readable and informative. There is also a useful section giving a summary of mental health service users’ legal rights and a comprehensive list of ways to keep well.
The dull design is the site’s biggest weakness, with it not looking dissimilar to a school text book in places. Although this makes it easy to navigate, this would still be achievable with a few more photos and fact boxes using up some of the reams of empty space.
STAR RATING 4/5
Run by: The Department for Education and Skills
Who is it for? Parents, child care workers and children’s services practitioners, as well as people considering related careers
Highlight: This revamped site has as fantastic layout that makes a large amount of information easily accessible.
This is achieved by it being broken down into three separate sections for parents, practitioners and those interested in a career in the sector, and each section features helpful tailored search functions. There is also a resources section that provides Sure Start professionals with help on a range of issues from how to handle the media to campaign artwork.
For parents, other services include a link to a comprehensive guide on the different types of child care available and information on child tax credits.
It is well documented that men and ethnic minorities are difficult to engage in Sure Start so devoting some areas of the site to them would improve it further.