Information for Referral Partners

SERVICE UPDATE (last update: 6th January 2020)

We are pleased to announce that we are remaining open during lockdown.  However, we are working with a significantly reduced team and reduced storage at our warehouse (owing to a quarantine area for donations and not operating our delivery service) and therefore are only taking urgent referrals at this time.

To help us prioritise, please carefully consider the following when placing your order:

  • Is this family in a particularly vulnerable position, with no support from family, friends or other agencies?
  • Has the child already been born or is the baby due within the next 2 months?
  • Does the child need this item yet? For example, a newborn will not need a highchair until they can sit up.
  • Can the order be collected promptly (within 10 working days) by a staff member or volunteer working with your organisation? 

Typical lead times are 1 week unless your order includes a high demand item such as a cot or double pram, in which case it’s 1-3 weeks.

Delivery: we are not currently operating our delivery service so all orders need to be collected from our warehouse in Fishponds, Bristol.

Collection: You will need to arrange collection of the items from our warehouse by either yourself or one of your colleagues. Clients are not permitted to collect their orders. Please see this blog for further information on why we cannot liase with the families directly.

Placing your order does not guarantee that we can supply everything however we will endeavour to do our best for the families and offer an alternative if appropriate (e.g. a Moses basket in lieu of a cot).

Useful notes:

  • Stair gates are a high demand item and therefore restricted to 1 per family.  Please only order when needed by the child (or older sibling).
  • Double prams please include in the “additional information” section the ages of both children using the double pram, and the weight of the older child if likely that they are nearing or over 15Kg so that we can supply a pram with an appropriate weight limit.  
  • Cots & cot beds if in high demand we may not be able to supply for a newborn baby but will offer a Moses basket or crib as an alternative.
  • If an item is showing as OUT OF STOCK on the website that means we have nothing in stock and already have a number of orders to fulfil.  We are not operating waiting lists so please place your order at a later date.  If you would like to be notified when the item is back in stock, please email and we will be happy to email you when the item is available again. 

Thank you for your continued patience during this challenging time.  

Who can refer to Baby Bank Network?

We invite referrals from all agencies who work with families in need to ensure that their babies’ basic needs are met. This includes health visitors, children’s centres and other organisations that are in contact with vulnerable families.

Referrals are made by health professionals on behalf of the families. Baby Bank does not have direct contact with the families themselves, and we do not collect any information about them. We ask for their initials when you submit a referral. This is to use as an ID if we need to speak to you regarding the referral. We ask for any additional information that may be relevant to us when packing your referral. For example, if a family lives on the 4th floor with no lift, then we would aim to provide the lightest pram that we can.

If you work with families that you would like to refer, please register on the My Referrals tab.

Who can be referred?

We currently collect items for newborns up to age 1. We offer clothes and toys/books for children up to age 4 years. We hope to expand this to age 5 in future.

We do not have any detailed referral criteria, we prefer to rely on the judgement of our referral partners who best know the families’ circumstances. However, our referral partners must bear in mind that Baby Bank’s main aim is the prevention or relief of poverty and the families must be in need for this reason. Referral partners will be required to give brief reasons for the referral to enable Baby Bank to ensure that items are given out in accordance with its aims.

All items are provided free of charge for the benefit of families in need.

Do you have a list of what items you offer?

If you would like to print off a list of items that we offer to take with you on visits, then please print out our Baby Essentials Request Form. You can then make your referral on our website using the instructions below.

What is the referral process?

Once you have registered, you can log in to your account on the My Referrals tab. Use the Make a Referral tab to select the items that the family requires in a similar way to any online shop, just add what you would like to your basket then checkout. You will receive an email confirmation of your order.

PLEASE NOTE: we are not currently operating our delivery service but hope to be able to offer this again soon.

Once we have received your order we will be in touch if we have any questions. Once your referral is ready, we will be in touch to arrange collection.

Please note: You will need to arrange collection of the items from our warehouse by either yourself or one of your colleagues. Please see this blog for further information on why we cannot liase with the families directly.

You can view your past and current referrals on the My Referrals tab.

Where do I collect referrals from? 

You can collect your referral from our shop just off Fishponds Road. We will contact you to arrange a time and location for you to collect your referral. You will need to arrange collection of the items and delivery to the family by either yourself or one of your colleagues.

Please see this blog for further information on why we cannot liase with the families directly.

Can I share my login details with a colleague?

Please do not share your login details with anyone. Each individual referrer must create their own personal account. This is so we have an accurate record of the number of individual referral partners we have, but also so that if we have any queries we know who to speak with.

Terms and Conditions

When you register as a referral partner, you agree to the following terms and conditions:

I confirm that I am a health professional or work/volunteer for an organisation who has contact with families who may require the services and items provided by Baby Bank Network.

I understand that Baby Bank’s main aim is the prevention or relief of poverty and I will refer families whom I judge to be in need in accordance with this criteria.   The items which I request for a family will also be items which I judge that they need in accordance with this criteria.  I understand that I will be required to give brief reasons for the referral in each case.

I understand that all items are provided free of charge for the benefit of families I ascertain are  in need.

I understand that referrals are made by myself on behalf of the families. Under no circumstance will I share my login details with anyone.

Baby Bank Network has no access to clients’ personal information nor will it ever ask for these details from you. Baby Bank Network will only liaise with the referrer or appointed person within the same organisation.

By agreeing to these terms and conditions you also agree to arrange collection and delivery of requested items by someone in your organisation only.

Baby Bank Network takes reasonable steps to satisfy ourselves that items we receive are safe to be redistributed.

All items received by referral partners and passed on to receiving families should be used in accordance with the supplied manufacturer’s instructions and any additional instructions supplied.

If upon receipt, items appear inappropriate or unsafe, it is the responsibility of the referral partner and receiving family to stop using the items straight away.  The referral partner should notify Baby Bank Network immediately and no later than 2 weeks after receipt, and we will do our best to source a replacement item.

The responsibility for the correct and safe use of all items supplied lies with the receiving family.  Once items are accepted, they become the property and responsibility of the family. Baby Bank Network cannot be held liable for any incident which occurs as a result of items use once they have been passed to the family.

Individual referral partners are not to refer themselves to the Baby Bank Network service.  If this occurs, the referral will not be accepted and Baby Bank Network will raise the fact that a self-referral was made with the individual’s organisation. Baby Bank Network must ensure that all donations are given to families who are eligible and ensure our service is not used for a referral partner’s personal gain. We rely on the independence and good judgement of our referral partners to ensure this.

Should an individual referral partner find themselves in circumstances where they need support from Baby Bank Network, then they should approach their midwife, health visitor or other professional working with them to discuss the possibility of a referral being made on their behalf.


I would like to be referred to Baby Bank

If you need help and would like to be referred to Baby Bank Network, please ask your health visitor, local children’s centre or other professional to contact us on your behalf. We have links with many services in Bristol.

I have more questions

If you have any queries, please contact us on .