Libraries in the UK are loved, valued and were visited an astonishing 265 million times last year, but for some families visiting the local library is not easy for a variety of reasons. Imagine you have 6 month old twins, a 2 year old and a 4 year old – you know the value of visiting the library, choosing books and reading with your children, but you have no transport, and the thought of taking all four children to the library on your own is daunting. What if the twins are tired and grumpy, or the 2 year old needs the toilet and the 4 year old doesn’t want to leave the library to go to the toilet – it’s such an effort on your own. This is where Home-Start volunteers are invaluable; they accompany and help families to access so many community resources and services such as libraries, children’s centres, parks, dentists, health services, etc. Our aim is to help families widen their network of support, so they can give their children opportunities to develop emotionally, socially, intellectually and physically.
Home-Start also supports Bookstart, a Booktrust programme that gifts free books to all children at two key ages before school to help families read together every day and inspire children with a rewarding love of books.