Home-Start provides informal, friendly family support. Very simply, volunteers offer regular support, friendship and practical help to young families under stress in their own homes. The idea is that your Home-Start volunteer visits you regularly, in your own home, usually once a week for between two and three hours. The visits are flexible and you decide together what to do during that time.
Sometimes you may want someone to listen, someone to talk to about your concerns or problems or sometimes just someone with whom to share an adult conversation! At another time you may want more practical support such as help to play with the children or to get the family to the shops.
Volunteers are not babysitters or home helps so any practical help is given as a friend would. For many families, this simple type of support makes a world of difference. While Home-Start does not have a magic formula to take all the problems away, parents say that having a friend to confide in, to cry with, to laugh with, to talk to, can make all the difference.
How does it work?
If you ask for Home-Start's help you can be sure of total confidentiality. There is no stigma attached to Home-Start's help - that's why so many parents ask for the support.
It's very easy - after contacting us, you meet one of our local co-ordinator who will discuss your needs with you, and where appropriate match you with a volunteer. The volunteer, (who has parenting experience), will visit you for a couple of hours a week, and the support will be monitored by the Co-ordinators.
Either have a chat with your, Family Support Practioner, Health Visitor, Children’s Centre worker, Social worker, or other professional working with you, or if you would prefer to refer yourself please complete the self referral form, or if you want to find out more contact us.
If you are not sure which of the above options to use, we recommend filling in the online form using the purple button.
If you are a professional referring a family please use the professionals referral form.