All posts by Catherine

Mid-Summer Drinks Reception

For over 20 years we have been providing support to thousands of families across Camden who are struggling with deprivation, isolation, mental and physical health problems, post-natal depression and more, by training and matching volunteers from the local area to support the families on a weekly basis.

With growing pressures and demands on the local families we’re here to support, it is crucial we have the resources we need to continue our vital work.  To help address this we are organising a drinks reception on Thursday 22nd June from 6.30-8.30pm at Wellcome Collection (183 Euston Road, NW1 2BE) to raise funds and start conversations with individuals and businesses in the local community.

We work to strengthen and grow the local community; through training volunteers and developing peer networks of support.  Stronger, resilient, supported families help fortify communities and working with Home-Start Camden has been a route into employment for more than 50% of our trained volunteers.  Supporting Home-Start Camden, through regular or one-off donations or through support in-kind will help us to continue this valuable work in our local community.

Guest speaker, Michele Hanson, Guardian columnist and author of ‘What the Grown-ups Were Doing’ will be sharing her thoughts on family life in Camden.

To register your attendance please RSVP to manager@homestartcamden.org or call 020 7424 1652.

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Trustee raises £1.7 million and wins National Volunteer Award!

                                         liz.HSC volunteer

Home-Start Camden Trustee, Liz Sturgeon (see photo) has won the Volunteer Fundraiser Award in the charity’s national awards, hosted by Home-Start UK’s ambassadors Kirstie Allsopp and Alastair Stewart.

Liz is one of the 14,808 amazing home-visiting volunteers and 2,448 trustees who gave their time to Home-Start to support families across the UK this year. Over 80 volunteers and 10 trustees regularly give their time in Camden alone each year.

Liz was nominated for the award by staff at Home-Start Camden for helping the charity raise £1, 710,418. Cathy Carpenter, manager, said, “Liz has kept Home-Start Camden going since 2009 when the scheme lost its local authority funding. Her dynamic leadership skills were spotted soon after she trained as a home-visiting volunteer, so we encouraged her to become a trustee in April 2008 and later co-chair.

“When Liz heard that Camden families could be left without the charity’s services, she rolled up her sleeves. Her highly exacting mind and precise attention to detail has been a powerfully successful tool in helping us secure a range of grants so we can keep helping parents and children in the borough.

“As lead trustee for fundraising, Liz developed Home-Start Camden’s fundraising strategy and writes funding applications with input from the manager and a few days of freelance fundraising expertise. Major grant-makers are: the Big Lottery (2009-2019), Henry Smith Charity (2009-2018), John Lyons Charity, Four Acre Trust, Camden Volunteering Fund, Hampstead Wells and Campden Trust, Tanza Trust and various one-year grants. We are hugely grateful as she is an invaluable and highly skilled volunteer fundraiser. Funders love her too as her contribution is of great value in demonstrating our work with families and volunteers.”

Liz has a background in educational publications editing at Channel 4. She was formerly a trustee for a breast cancer charity. She is a parent of two grown-up children and has recently become a grandmother for the first time. She said, “Thank you very much for this award.  I am thrilled and proud that my fundraising work has enabled HSC to continue its valuable work over the last seven year without any cuts to its services.  We have also raised considerable funds towards its work for the next two years.”

Home-Start Chome start-98amden Manager, Cathy Carpenter collected the Home-Start Volunteer Fundraising Award on Liz’s behalf from Kirstie Allsopp and Alastair Stewart (see photo).

In a written message to all the winning volunteers, HRH Princess Alexandra said, “This occasion is a wonderful way to celebrate all that can be accomplished by working together with one common purpose – to help parents and children to cope and thrive as they face very difficult circumstances.

“I have had the pleasure of meeting many of you and, this evening, I extend my personal thanks to all Home-Start Volunteers for your compassion for families and children and for your gifts of time, energy and care.

“My special congratulations go to this year’s winners and runners up. Thank you for your selflessness and kindness and for the very great difference you make to families.”

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Mayor of Camden thanks Home-Start Camden volunteers

Mayor of Camden with HSC volunteers - March 2016During March,  the Mayor of Camden, Cllr. Larraine Revah met HS Camden volunteers to thank them for their valuable contribute to Camden’s families with children under five.HSC volunteers with Mayor of Camden

On Monday 14th March volunteers were treated to lunch in the Mayor’s Parlour at Camden Town Hall, Judd Street.  Volunteers visit families who are struggling on a weekly basis to assist with practical tasks, offer emotional support and help families get out to health and child-care appointments as well as using local parks and services.  This helps reduce isolation, increase parenting skills and confidence and provide vital stimulation to Camden children to give them the best start in life.  Cllr. Larraine Revah gave great praise to HSCamden volunteers for their regular support and thanked them for all they do.

Also that week the Mayor visited a number of Camden’s charities with Sir Ian Johnston, the Queen’s local representaHSC hosts Mayor and Deputy Lieutenanttive,  Deputy Lieutenant for the Borough of Camden to learn more about their community work.  Home-Start Camden was one of these charities and the VIPs were able to meet HSCamden’s Trustees, volunteers and staff in our training room.   Both Cllr. Revah and Sir Ian were very impressed with the level of commitment offered by the volunteers.  Volunteers spoke moving about their role with families and how this has made them feel a great sense of fulfilment and is highly rewarding to them as individuals.

 

 

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HSC staff attended Home-Start Convention

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HSCamden staff,Cathy Carpenter, Saiqa Pandor and Rosemary Palmer joined over 350 Home-Start colleagues at the Home-Start (HS)Convention 2016.  The event held at East Midlands Conference Centre Nottingham on 21 and 22 March was an opportunity to share best practice and learn from inspirational speakers and workshop leaders.  The Brighter Futures convention was chaired by Clive Myrie, from BBC TV News and Craig Dearden-Phillips MBE, CEO of Stepping out who introduced keynote speakers: Rob Parkinson, Chief Executive Home-Start UK; Dawn Austwick, Chief Executive Big Lottery Fund; Children’s Commissions for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland – Sally Holland, Tam Baillie and Koulla YIasouma; Professor Tanya Byron, The Times columnist and child expert on BBC TV’s The House of Tiny Tearaways; and Michael Norton, founder of the Directory for Social Change.

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On the evening of 21st March, Home-Start celebrated the amazing contributes and achievements of volunteers throughout the UK with its first Home-Start Volunteer Awards.   The ceremony was hosted by Home-Start ambassadors, Kirstie Allsopp and Alastair Stewart.  HSCamden staff were photographed with Kirstie Allsopp and Rob Parkinson, HSUK Chief Executive.

Amongst the Award winners was HSCamden’s Trustee, Liz Sturgeon who won the Volunteer Fundraiser of the Year for helping to  raise a massive £1.7 million for HSCamden from 2009-2019! Her Award was collected on the night by HSCamden’s Manager.IMG_0253

 

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Family Support Volunteer – Next Training Course

4th July to 27th July (Evening Course)
Every Tuesday & Thursday
6pm to 9pm

19th September to 12th October
Every Tuesday & Thursday
9.45am  to 2.45pm

Become a Family Support Volunteer with families with young children going through a difficult time.

Enhance your skills to offer friendship and support to families in their own. Visit one family 3-4 hours weekly and share your parenting skills and knowledge of Camden.

Take Home-Start Camden’s Volunteer Preparation Course this term!
Certificates awarded & expenses paid.

Download the Information pack here or send us a mail through our contact us page. Then call 0207 424 1603 to arrange an interview.

Training takes place in our training room in Kentish Town

“Before starting the course, I was very worried as I have not undertaken a course or lessons in a very long time. However, now we have come to the end of the prep course, I feel ready to undertake more and improve my academic portfolio. More importantly, I feel I have a lot to offer other parents (carers) and feel a lot more confident in myself! This will have a positive impact on the rest of my life! Thank you so so much!” (Volunteer, Prep Course).

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Funding Successes!

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Home-Start Camden is delighted to announce that the Big Lottery Fund has awarded the family support charity a four year grant of £413, 696.   HSC Trustees were joined by local Councillor Jenny Headlam-Wells for this announcement (see photo).  This will underpin the work of Home-Start Camden to support families with at least one child under five who are going through a difficult time.  The charity trains and supervises volunteers who visit families weekly to help increase parenting skills, confidence,  reduce isolation and increase children’s and parents’ well-being.

Home-Start Camden are also very grateful to the Henry Smith Charity and John Lyons Charity, which are funding our family support work for three more years until March 2018.  The three grants above will fund approximately 75% of our costs of the charity’s family support work and volunteer training programme to help prevent family crisis from escalating.

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Next Family Support Volunteer Training Course

16th November to 8th December
Twice a week Wednesdays & Thursdays

Become a Family Support Volunteer with families with young children going through a difficult time.  Enhance your skills to offer friendship and support to families in their own. Visit one family 3-4 hours weekly and share your parenting skills and knowledge of Camden.  Take Home-Start Camden’s Volunteer Preparation Course this term.
Certificates awarded & expenses paid.
Download the Information pack here or send us a mail through our contact us page. Then call 0207 424 1603 to arrange an interview.

Training takes place in our Kentish Town training room.

“Before starting the course, I was very worried as I have not undertaken a course or lessons in a very long time. However, now we have come to the end of the prep course, I feel ready to undertake more and improve my academic portfolio. More importantly, I feel I have a lot to offer other parents (carers) and feel a lot more confident in myself! This will have a positive impact on the rest of my life! Thank you so so much!” (Volunteer, Jan-Mar 2013 Prep Course).

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Three Peaks Challenge completed!

samsung 2 263On one of the wettest weekends this Summer, Home-Start Camden supporter Joe Paley climbed the highest mountains in the UK in aid of Home-Start Camden.  And the best of it samsung 2 450is that Joe and his work colleagues did the Three Peaks Challenge in 23 hours 5 minutes!

Starting first thing Saturday morning 25th July, the team scaled Scotland’s Ben Nevis then drove south to the Lake District to tackle Scarfell Pike, England’s highest peak before a final drive into Wales to reach Snowdon and get back down within the 24 hour Three Peak Challenge deadline.  With little sleep and eating on the move, Joe said, ” It was such hard work and I’m still aching over three days later! It was an amazing challenge and we really had to keep going to stay on time. Luckily it rained mostly when we were in the van. The worst of it was the lack of sleep and walking down in the dark when we were coming down from Scarfell.    But it was well worth it to raise money for Home-Start Camden’s work with families under pressure and I’m really happy its over and that I managed the full challenge.”

To support Joe in his fundraising efforts please click samsung 2 449

 

 

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