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Swindon children's charity aims to help more people in town
6:30pm Thursday 21st February 2013 in News
Buy this photo » Charity workers Kate Rowe, Nazneen Amin and Kay Kane
PARENTS with young children have been given a taste of the help and guidance they can get from the Children’s Society in Swindon.
In an event open to families with under-fives, the charity set out to reach more of people it wants to help with health, support and employment advice.
The open day took place at the Broadgreen Centre yesterday.
The charity is part-funded by the Government and helps any children, regardless of faith, including those at risk on the streets, with disabilities, young refugees or carers and those within the youth justice system.
It also uses lobbying and research to try to influence child protection policy and give young people a better chance in life.
There are 14 children’s centres in the town, four of which are managed by the society.
They act as one-stop shops for young families, but are facing a difficult task in achieving their target aim of reaching about 1,000 children in each area.
The society’s programme manager, Kate Rowe, and family outreach worker Nazneen Amin were at yesterday’s event.
Along with other workers, they greeted parents who had come to see what the society offered.
Kate, 49, said: “A lot of families don’t know about children’s centres.
“We offer advice about early educational options, all family health services and support with getting back to work.
“We also offer one-to-one support to parents when things are getting difficult.
“The centres are particularly convenient because parents can access all of the services under one roof.
“Parents come in with children to a ‘stay and play’ session. It is really important that the parent or carer comes and stays with the child and they play together.”
The event provided an opportunity to reach out to parents and show what the centre has to offer.
“It is part of a strategy to reach some of the families that aren’t currently accessing our services,” said Kate.
“Our trained members of staff help the parents to understand their child’s development.
“With a child under five – as any parent knows – there’s a lot to learn.
“Based on scientific research, the early years are essential for brain development, so the centres are really important. We cater to everyone.”
One visitor yesterday, Rizvana Mubarack Ali, of the town centre, attended the event with her three-year-old daughter, Zaara.
She said: “It is our first time to the centre.
“The organisers asked lots of questions. It is very useful to talk about children’s care.”