Tusla - Infant Mental Health Network: Request for Tender


Request for Tender: To develop a National Framework for Infant Mental Health Networks (IMH) and a standardised curriculum for the 2-day IMH Masterclass training.

Background & Context

A national Infant Mental Health (IMH) Network working group has been established to support a standardised approach to developing and implementing Infant Mental Health Networks. Membership of the working group has representation from the Tusla Area Based Childhood (ABC) Programme, HSE Healthy Child Programme, Irish Association of Infant Mental Health (IAIMH) and Tusla.

Simpson et al., 2016, describes IMH as an interdisciplinary field of theory, research, practice and policy concerned with supporting the development of a young child’s mental health by supporting the relationships between infants and toddlers and their primary caregivers.

IMH practice is best understood along a continuum – promotion, prevention, intervention and treatment, integrated across services and disciplines.

Research has consistently demonstrated the impact of early childhood experiences on mental health across all of the lifespan: early experiences matter. Consequently, what happens during the infant stage of development lays the foundation for psychological, social and emotional functioning ( Mares, Newman & Warren, 2011), health and wellbeing across the life span. This period provides a window of unparalleled opportunity to take a life span approach to ensure that the mental health and wellbeing needs of infants and toddlers within the context of their caregiving relationship are provided with the best possible opportunity to prosper. (Evaluation of an interdisciplinary model for integrating IMH principles into everyday clinical practice and service in the community, Cork 2002)

Staff from many different disciplines across HSE, Tusla, education and the community and voluntary sectors are supporting children and families every day using an IMH lens to support the building of secure attachment as a strong foundation upon which children, families and communities can achieve their best possible outcomes.

The National IMH Network working group seeks to engage a consultant to work alongside them in establishing a Framework to inform a consistent approach to IMH Networks and to develop a standardised IMH Masterclass training.


The applicant is required to demonstrate in their application:

  1. Details of your organisation and profile of individuals involved in the project.
  2. Knowledge, skills and experience in the Infant Mental Health field or similar field.
  3. Evidence of the development of training programmes/frameworks based on a relational model. (Please submit details about previous similar projects)
  4. Overall approach to the work and methodologies that will be used.
  5. Detailed costings/ quotes for the work to be undertaken to include VAT.
  6. Timeframe for the completion of tasks.
  7. Details of two referees.
  8. Applicants should include tax clearance and insurance details as part of the application.

Required Outputs

  1. To develop a national framework to guide and standardise Infant Mental Health Networks.
    • Reviewing literature and practice, nationally and internationally, establishing the level of activity, and evidencing what is working in the Irish context.
    • Scoping the work of the existing IMH Networks.
  2. To standardise the learning outcomes, content and format of the two-day Infant Mental Health Masterclass.
    • Exploring a national approach to building workforce capacity.
    • Establishing what other IMH training is available and reaches a comparable standard to the IMH Masterclass.

The required Outputs will be finalised with the IMH Working Group and Consultants/s.

Application Process:

  1. Cover letter, including the tenderer’s outline plan and methodology for approaching the work: a maximum of two pages.
  2. CV(s) of all personnel involved.
  3. Costings for the work to be undertaken.
  4. Details of referees.

Criteria pertaining to the evaluation of EOI received:

  1. Quality; Service delivery proposal (80%)
    • Relevant experience and knowledge in the Infant Mental Health field.
    • The understanding of the brief.
    • Methodological approach.
    • Proven track record.
  2. Price Proposal (20%)

Start Date & Budget

The maximum budget available is €24,500 inclusive of VAT and expenses. The start date will be mid- late August 2022.

Completed Tenders should be returned by email to Bernie Laverty at bernie.laverty@tusla.ie (087 4059799) by noon on Friday 19th August.

General Info

Date Entered/Updated
8th Jul, 2022
Expiry Date
19th Aug, 2022