by Dawn Holmes, Safe Families
This year more than ever we have seen the impact of loneliness and isolation and the struggle that we have all experienced. For so many families in our communities this has not just been a struggle this year, it is a daily challenge they face. That is why the work of Safe Families in connecting and bringing a sense of belonging to families is more important than ever.
Facing life alone can be hard. When a family feels that they are isolated, that there is no one who can help them, it’s a scary place to be. Safe Families is a Christian charity that exists to create relationship and connection because everyone deserves to belong.
Since starting in the North East of England in 2013 we have now expanded in over 30 Local Authorities across the UK. In these areas we have linked children, young people and families with over 4,500 local volunteers who have offered help and support. In fact, over 10,000 children are now benefiting from the support of Safe Families volunteers.
You can find out more about us at our website: safefamilies.uk
How can I make a difference?
At Safe Families we recognise that people in varying circumstances and stages of life will want to get involved in different ways. We have 3 main ways you can help to make a difference: Volunteer, Give and Pray.
Our volunteers are essential to the care and support Safe Families provides throughout the UK. We have 2 main volunteering roles:
Family Friend - Family friends work directly with families to provide emotional and practical support, enabling parents to feel less isolated.
Host Family - Host families open their homes to look after children for a night or two offering regular respite or perhaps up to a couple of weeks in an emergency.
If you don’t have any time currently to volunteer could you support a family either with practical resources or could you support Safe Families financially? We currently have a financial shortfall of £96 per family we support, could you regularly give £8 per month to support a family?
Resource Friend - Individuals who are able to provide useful items such as a cot or children’s clothing or offer skills like gardening and DIY.
Could you commit to pray regularly? For our families, our volunteers and for Safe Families as we develop and grow. Sign up for email updates on the website.
All welcome to our Information Session
Come and find out a little more about Safe Families – what we do to support local isolated families and why we do it! Maybe you’d like to join our team of amazing volunteers offering hope and belonging or perhaps you know someone with a heart for your local community that you could tell about us.
Thursday 4th November 6.30-7pm at Hope Baptist Church, Highbridge – all welcome and refreshments available. Feel free to stay on to our volunteer training session on ‘Caring for Families Consistently’ from 7-9.30pm. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
This module of training for volunteers begins with the background of Safe Families and then goes on to looking at support networks, keeping boundaries, empowering people, setting goals and safe caring. It’s an interactive and relaxed couple of hours with space for questions and discussion, and aims at equipping volunteers on ‘Caring for Families Consistently’. It could be used as general training for anyone supporting people in the community.
Thursday 4th November 7-9.30pm at Hope Baptist Church, Highbridge – all welcome but please book your place with email@example.com.
For more details or to discuss how you can support Safe Families in Somerset please contact Dawn on firstname.lastname@example.org or 07384 218826.