Whilst we have suspended our home-visiting service because of the Coronavirus pandemic, our volunteers have continued to support families remotely and more recently, in person outdoors following social distancing guidelines.
Covid-19 has brought new challenges to families that were already struggling to cope. Our volunteers are here to support families and help them cope as they start to navigate the new normal.
“My first experience working as a volunteer for Home-Start Wandsworth began as the first lockdown started in March 2020. I know that the support volunteers give to Home-Start families has always been immensely valuable, but I can’t imagine there has ever been such a time when making that connection with a vulnerable family has meant more. I was initially worried about how easy it was going to be to build any rapport with the mum I was supporting when all we could do was video call. But I think the initial feeling of us all sharing this common experience of lockdown and disbelief at what was going on in the world , made it really easy to chat and share stories. I soon really looked forward to our weekly calls and messages. I remember lots of people in the press and social media saying that the pandemic was a great leveller, but from my experience this couldn’t have been further from the truth: vulnerable families only became more vulnerable and they lost all access to so many of the support services that they heavily relied on. Without the support of Home-Start my family would have been terribly alone. After months of video calls, our first face to face walk in the park was really special. I have loved getting to know the family, and even though our time together under the protective arm of Home-Start has come to an end, we will definitely be staying in touch.”
– Vicky, Home-Start Wandsworth volunteer
Volunteers explain how they have been supporting their Home-Start family
Sarah’s story – Sarah has been doing yoga with her Home-Start mum. It has been incredibly beneficial, helping mum to get out of the house and boost her self-esteem.
Fiona’s story – Fiona is supporting a mum with MS. Together with Claire, another Home-Start volunteer, they video call mum every day, offering a friendly, chatty face.
Lisa’s story – Lisa arranged for food and baby supplies to be delivered during lockdown as her Home-Start mum was crippled with anxiety and couldn’t leave the house. Lisa is now helping mum reintegrate with the outside world.
Angela’s story – During lockdown Angela kept in regular contact with her Home-Start family and also sent food supplies as mum was struggling to get out to the shops on her own with two small children.