Parent or family member
How to complain or feedback on our products and services if you are a parent or family member.
At NDCS, we actively encourage you to contact us with your feedback, whether good or bad. The process given below explains how you can comment on the service you have received. It also sets out how quickly you can expect a response from us and how we use your feedback within NDCS. It also states what you can do if you are not happy with the response given by NDCS.
If you have positive feedback for us then please use the same process and contact details that are given in stage 1.
Stage 1: tell us about your complaint/concerns as soon as possible:
a) Face-to-face whilst the service is still being provided e.g. at an event or during a face to face meeting. The most effective way we can resolve a problem is if we are aware of it whilst you are still receiving the service you are unhappy with. Please tell the NDCS staff member who is in charge (usually the person organising the event or leading the meeting).This means we can look into what has happened and try to resolve it there and then. This may not always be possible but we will do our best.
b) Contact us by telephone/minicom. If you are not able to tell us face to face or it relates to a service provided remotely e.g. membership, then the first step is to contact the department within NDCS that relates to your complaint/concern (see list below). Ideally the situation can be resolved by telephone as this is often the most effective way for us to find out exactly what has happened and to strive to resolve the situation quickly and efficiently – and hopefully to your satisfaction. If you prefer to speak a language other than English, tell us the language of your choice and your phone number (in English). An interpreter will ring you back within a few minutes.
c) Write to us with your complaint/concern. You can also send us a letter or email your complaint to us (see contact details below). Please include as much information as you can about the nature of your complaint, along with your full name, address, postcode and contact telephone or textphone number.
What information do we need to know to help us deal with your complaint?
Please make sure you tell us
• what has happened
• when it happened
• the background to the problem, if you think it is relevant
• what you’ve done to try and sort it out
• what you want us to do to put things right.
Who to contact with your complaint/feedback:
If you know the team responsible for the service you wish to comment on and already have contact details for them, then please use those at stage 1. If you are unsure of who to contact, please use the details below:
Events for families and children
Tel: 0121 234 9820 Minicom: 0121 234 9829 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel: 0121 234 9820 Minicom: 0121 234 9829 email: email@example.com
All other services within Children, Young People and Families. This includes feedback relating to:
• Helpline (including publications)
• Appeals advisors
• Family officers
• Membership services / local groups
• Special projects
• Any feedback where you are unsure which department you need (we will make sure it gets passed to the right department)
Tel: 0808 800 8880 (voice and text) email: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you prefer to write to us with your complaint/feedback, please send your letter, together with your name, address and contact telephone or textphone number to:
NDCS, Head Office
Ground Floor South, Castle House,
37- 45 Paul Street,
London EC2A 4LS
What will we do next with your feedback?
If the feedback is positive: we will usually circulate it to other staff within NDCS, having first removed any identifying names. This feedback acts as a great motivator for staff and volunteers and it may be used to help us identify good practice within NDCS. The feedback may also be used in marketing and promotional material about our services. We will not publish your name unless we ask for your permission to do so.
If the feedback is negative: We will try to resolve the problem straight away if we can. If we can't do this – for example, because the information we need is not to hand, or because we need to carry out further investigation – then we will make a record of your complaint/concerns and agree the best way and time to contact you. This will normally be within five working days unless we make some other arrangement that is acceptable to you.
All negative feedback is taken seriously and recorded at NDCS for monthly reviews within each team. We also review it quarterly across the whole of the Children, Young People and Families department. This helps us monitor and improve the quality of our services.
If you are not happy with the response you receive at this stage please go to stage 2.
Stage 2: taking your complaint further.
If, after contacting us you are still unhappy, please tell us in writing, either by letter or email and send this to the Helpline team at the postal or email address below. Please set out clearly the details of the complaint, explaining why you are not satisfied with our response and what you would like us to do to put things right. If you need to use an interpreter/communicator to help make the complaint, NDCS will organise communication support if required.
We promise that your complaint will be dealt with promptly
Once we have received a formal written complaint, we will arrange for it to be fully investigated. Your complaint will be acknowledged in writing or via email within five working days from receipt and the letter will say when you can expect a full response. This should normally be within 10 working days unless the matter is very complicated in which case it may take us up to a maximum of 21 working days. Where this is the case, we will still let you know what action is being taken and tell you when we expect to be able to provide you with a full response.
Stage 3: the next stage
If, upon receipt of the written response you are still not satisfied, please write to the NDCS Executive Director of Children, Young People and Families at the NDCS office in London, and tell us what you wish us to do next. Your complaint will be fully investigated and you can expect to receive a written response within 10 working days from receipt of your letter or email.
Stage 4: If you are still unhappy with the response received
You should write to the NDCS Chief Executive, at the NDCS office in London who will review the response given, in consultation with our board of trustees as appropriate. Your response will be acknowledged within 5 working days, although to allow time for investigation, it may take up to 21 working days for us to fully investigate what has happened and send you our response.
Stage 5: taking your complaint outside NDCS
If you are not satisfied with the response from our Chief Executive, you can seek advice from outside the organisation. You may be able to get advice from one of the two charity regulators in the UK – the Charity Commission (if you live in England or Wales) or the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR). Their contact details are listed below.
The Charity Commission has a publication “Complaints about Charities” at http://www.charity-commission.gov.uk/Library/guidance/cc47text.pdf “ which sets out the kind of complaints the Charity Commission will investigate.
OSCR has publication which covers the same issues at http://www.oscr.org.uk/media/31388/inquiry_and_intervention_policy.pdf
Even if your complaint is not one which the charity regulators will investigate, they may be able to give you further advice.