Home-Start Wokingham District is one of a network of over 300 Home-Starts in the UK offering a unique service: recruiting and training volunteers – who are parents themselves – to visit and support young families with at least one child under five years old.
We have been established since 1996 and have supported families from all walks of life throughout Wokingham Borough.
What Home-Start offers
- A carefully selected, experienced parent volunteer, who will regularly visit a family in their own home, usually for a few hours every week. This friendly tailor-made parent-to-parent support is a simple yet effective way of enabling families to get back on track.
- Outreach and family groups so parents can get out, meet others, and become more involved in their own community.
Our support is free, confidential and non-judgemental.
Home-Start has a proven positive impact on families’ lives, offering support that cuts across all boundaries – of gender, social class, ethnic origin and financial status.
Home-Start volunteers come from all walks of life, just like the families we support. They understand the stresses and strains of bringing up a young family. They can give:
- Emotional support to help parents find ways to manage and resolve problems, increase their confidence and independence and enjoy family life.
- Direct support for children, including playing, listening, having fun, establishing routines, encouraging development and providing opportunities for outings and treats.
- Practical help with getting to appointments, doing the shopping, budgeting, nutrition and meal planning, cooking and making the home safe.
- Information and links to other organisations including health and educational services.
- Attendance at meetings and moral support, especially in relation to dealing with case conferences or solicitors and court cases.
Why do parents need help?
Parents need help for many different reasons. The following are some of the more common reasons why people may be supported by Home-Start, but this list is by no means complete !
- They may feel isolated because they have no family nearby and are struggling to make friends in their community.
- They may be mothers with post-natal depression who need emotional support and a listening ear.
- They may have several children under five including twins or triplets.
- They may have children with additional needs or a disability.
- They or their partner may have a long term illness.
- They may be single parents on a low income and may have issues with housing.
The Home-Start approach
Home-Start schemes are rooted in the community they serve. We are managed locally but are supported by a national organisation, Home-Start UK, which offers direction, training, information and guidance to schemes and ensures consistent and quality support for parents and children.
Home-Start has a proven, lasting, positive impact on the development of children and the health and welfare of the family.
Home-Start offers a unique service. We recruit and train volunteers, who are usually parents themselves, to visit families at home and offer them informal, friendly and confidential support. The families we help have at least one child under 5.
To help give children the best possible start in life, Home-Start supports parents as they grow in confidence, strengthen their relationship with their children and widen their links with the local community.
Home-Start wants to see a society in which all parents have the support they need to give their children the best start in life.