We are here for parents and families. Everyone needs a little help sometimes. We support parents to grow in confidence, strengthen their relationship with their children, and widen their links with the local community.
Our volunteers work alongside families to offer emotional and practical support, enhance wellbeing, connect effectively with other services, and build up their ability to cope independently.
We have three main services:
“My volunteer has been an amazing friend who has been a big part of our lives. She has been my sunshine on many dark days.”
Our network of over 70 volunteers call or visit families at least once a week. They offer impartial and non-judgemental listening and befriending to our families. They may attend appointments, mentor, help introduce routines, help to access local services. But, above all they listen and reassure families. Support is tailored to each family and aims to empower families to cope with their difficulties.
“Before my volunteer, I wanted to stay in bed and cry. She has helped me so much.”
Bump to Baby
Our volunteers also support mums through pregnancy, birth and beyond. Our volunteers listen to any concerns and help reassure mothers who may be feeling anxious about their pregnancy, birth or looking after their child. They provide practical support like help with budgeting and preparing for baby’s arrival. Our volunteers can help arrange specialist support and signpost to local services. We ensure that our volunteers receive training in perinatal issues so that they are equipped to offer advice and support where needed.
Our volunteers’ calls and visits support the whole family, helping ensure the best possible start for mum and baby.
Our families tell us that our warm and welcoming group activities have helped them feel less isolated, more confident around new people and better able to cope.
“The thought of going out on my own was overwhelming, but thanks to my volunteer, I was able to leave the house for the first time in a long time! It was so good to have adult conversations and meet with other mums. The group were really welcoming, and I felt like I was understood. They have really helped me get my confidence.”
We host weekly meet-ups, enabling our families to come together, chat and relax in a safe environment. During term time, we host a weekly Connect@Home session at St Andrew’s Church, Earlsfield which provides families the opportunity to meet for a chat, a coffee, homemade lunch and some craft activities.
As well as our regular meet-ups we also host topic-focused sessions e.g.Toddler’s Behaving Badly, paediatric first aid, which give our parents the chance to build their skills and confidence.
“I’ve enjoyed the different classes available, I have attended sessions on baby massage, cooking and sewing.”
Life for Home-Start families is often especially hard in the school holidays, so we usually organise popular day trips to places like Kew Gardens and West Wittering. Our trips not only give parents and children alike a fun and adventurous day out but firm friendships are often formed, enabling families to support each other in the future. This summer we will hosting a family picnic and a fun day in partnership with Open Air Fit.