Home-Start Lambeth is looking for more volunteers to share their parenting experience and is starting a new training scheme soon.
The local charity supports vulnerable and often isolated families with children under five. It was set up in 1998 by a group of local people who wanted to see a Home-Start service established for families.
Sophia Ruck, who has been a helping and support to struggling young families in Lambeth for more than 14 years, is stepping down from volunteering with Home-Start. She explained that “often mums with young children are isolated – they might not know anyone living locally and it can be difficult with young children, especially twins, to even get out of the home,” says Sophia. “But visiting for just a couple of hours a week to offer emotional and practical support can make an enormous difference to the whole family.”
“I’ve really enjoyed working with parents who are trying to do their best in difficult circumstances and I’ve learnt a lot from meeting families with different backgrounds and cultures and understanding the problems they face,” she said.
“It has been very satisfying to link the family into what is available locally – from playgroups to health services. My aim was to be a friend to the family but you must respect that there are professional boundaries. First and foremost I am there for the children.”
She praised the comprehensive training she received before becoming a volunteer: “I was helping families but I always had the support and back-up from my Home-Start colleages.”
For more details see www.homestartlambeth.co.uk, call 020 7924 9292.