Children’s Centres volunteers given resounding message of thanks

Published on: Thursday, 10-March-2016

Children’s Centre Volunteers who gave more than 17,000 hours to help run services for local families last year were given a resounding message of thank you at a celebration event.

Volunteers from centres across Knowsley gathered at New Hutte in Halewood to share good practice and find out about the difference their volunteering hours had made to local families.

The event also coincided with a visit from Cllr Michael Pavey, deputy leader of Brent Council, who came to Knowsley to see how the borough has continued to support and develop its Children’s Centres in the face of budget cuts.

Speaking at the event, Cllr See told the volunteers: “I know the value of what you bring to our Children’s Centres, and that most of what the teams deliver across the borough would not happen without you. You’ve made our Children’s Centres what they are and I’m here to tell you how much you are valued.Cllr Michael Pavey, of Brent Council, with Cllr Gary See, Knowsley Council’s Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, with Children’s Centres volunteers at the celebration event at New Hutte

He went on: “I strongly believe that Children’s Centres should be the first stop for every child – even before they are born the centres have plenty to offer an expectant mum. Once the baby arrives they are a place where mum, dad, carer and child will all find something to help support them - even if it’s just knowing that there is a network of people out there that they can turn to.”

He told the volunteers: “You make a massive contribution to the wellbeing and the quality of lives of many families in the borough – probably more so than you realise.”

In each of the past three years there have been an average of 118 volunteers working across Knowsley’s Children’s Centres giving around 17,300 hours to the Children’s Centres annually.

The integration of volunteers into the day to day running of the centres has been recognised nationally, both by Ofsted in their inspections of the centres and more recently when Huyton Children’s Centres were the first in the North of England to gain Investing in Volunteers status.

Hear Cllr See explain more about the event and the importance of volunteers in Children’s Centres.

You can also listen to the stories of two children’s centre volunteers who say volunteering has transformed their lives for the better.

If you would like to find out more about volunteering in Knowsley’s Children’s Centres contact your local co-ordinator:

Huyton – Jess Aitchison 0151 443 5226

Halewood, Whiston, Prescot - Wendy Martindale 0151 443 4531

Kirkby – Ann Bennett 0151 443 4321