Parents and politicians were among a delegation which has delivered a petition to Downing Street over the future of Sure Start in Newcastle.
Sure Start programmes offer support to parents and children in less privileges communities.
Fifteen centres are under review, as part of wider spending cuts. The city council is looking to save more than £4million on family services, blaming the Government's spending squeeze.
The petition was organised by the trade union Unison, which says it collected three and a half thousand names.
In response, the Local Government Minister Kris Hopkins said that every part of the public sector needs to contribute to paying off the deficit left by the last administration.
Final decisions have yet to be made by Newcastle city council over the future of its Sure Start programmes.