everything you put in you get even more out and that is why I love
being a Home-Start Volunteer and I cannot imagine why I would stop
because it is just part of what I do now with my life.
course was brilliant. On paper some of the things were quite scary and
you think "how will I handle this or cope" but actually it is just
life, and every day we deal with problems and answers and issues.
Thatís why the families like Home-Start as an organisation because we
are not an agency looking for problems or trying to trip them up, we
are there because have agreed that they want our help and we can be a
friend and a supporter.
3 out of the 4 families I have supported have
all had really sick infants or babies. Nearly losing a new born baby
is a massive experience and spending all those months in hospitable
affects your relationship with your partner and any other children you
might have. Their confidence to be parents was really knocked for six.
I am still in touch with all my families which is really nice and I
met up with one mum for a coffee the other day and she said to me "you
know Trish when I first met you I felt that life was really on top of
me and now I feel on top of my life". That was really lovely.
What I have learned is that we are all the same. Some of us are
privileged to be in families who have the luck, the support, the
finance, whatever it is to do all these things and other families
arenít quite as lucky. In my first families the dad had been brought
up in care so he just really didnít have a clue about family life, how
to talk to his kids and appreciate simple things like when they came
running in with a drawing they had done at nursery that they were
really proud of.
All the children are so amazing. I get to go and play with them and
have a lovely time which is really, really rewarding and it makes me
realise that the first few years of a childís life are so important
and anything that we can do to help is fantastic. I think we
volunteers are like the icing on the cake because the Co-ordinators
and the agencies have done all the hard work and we come along at the
end to take the glory! We are so lucky to do this and to get so much
out of it.