Com­mu­nity Link Foundation

Ormskirk Advertiser - - Martin Mere - BY NI­COLA KENYON vis­iternews@south­portvis­

ASOUTHPORT based or­gan­i­sa­tion is to ben­e­fit from a grant from Com­mu­nity Link Foundation to help fam­i­lies in the area.

Home-Start South­port and Formby ap­plied to CLF for a grant to­wards run­ning a weekly group for very iso­lated fam­i­lies.

The or­gan­i­sa­tion, which is based on Wight Moss Way, South­port, has a team of vol­un­teers who help par­ents who are not able to leave the house be­cause of anx­i­ety or de­pres­sion and they bring them to the group.

Chil­dren are looked af­ter in a creche which is run by vol­un­teers, and they play and meet other chil­dren while their par­ents take part in or­gan­ised train­ing and ed­u­ca­tion ses­sions in an­other room on site.

The par­ents learn about cook­ery, bud­get­ing, par­ent­ing skills, arts and crafts, play and early learn­ing. They grow in con­fi­dence while learn­ing new skills and mak­ing new friends. Af­ter a while, the par­ents have the con­fi­dence to come to the group by them­selves, with­out the help of vol­un­teers to get them there.

The fam­i­lies are re­ferred to the char­ity by health visi­tors and so­cial workers be­cause they are find­ing day-to-day life dif­fi­cult.

With Home-Start they learn to cope and start to en­joy fam­ily life.

The grant from Com­mu­nity Link Foundation will be used to­wards the rental of the church hall where the group meets, and the costs of a ses­sional play leader.

Enda Ry­lands, chair­man of Com­mu­nity Link Foundation, said: “We are pleased to be able to help HomeS­tart with this grant as what they are do­ing within the com­mu­nity is so im­por­tant.

“With­out or­gan­i­sa­tions like Home-Start these peo­ple could con­tinue to feel iso­lated, but groups like this can make a huge dif­fer­ence to their lives.

“So, we were keen to sup­port them so they can con­tinue to help these fam­i­lies.”

Be­tween 30 and 40 fam­i­lies ben­e­fit from this ev­ery year and the fam­i­lies are the most iso­lated and vul­ner­a­ble.

The par­ents who at­tend have chil­dren with dis­abil­i­ties; some are refugees, many have de­pres­sion and poor men­tal health.

The group is de­signed to cher­ish them and make them feel safe.

An­nie Ives, man­ager of HomeS­tart South­port and Formby, said:

“We have been de­lighted to re­ceive the grant from the CLF.

“It means we can of­fer much­needed sup­port to fam­i­lies who just need a bit of help through a tough time.”

For more in­for­ma­tion about Com­mu­nity Link Foundation, ap­ply­ing for a grant or how you can help with fundrais­ing go to www. clfoun­da­

An­nie Ives at a char­ity event for Home-Start; inset, Enda Ry­lands

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