Home-Start is a voluntary organisation offering support, friendship and practical help to families at home with at least one child under 5. The first Home-Start scheme was launched in 1973 by the organisation's founder and life-long president, Margaret Harrison. Since that time the organisation has gone from strength to strength - there are now over 300 schemes in total, with more than 8000 volunteers visiting over 20,000 families.
Each scheme is an independently registered charity, staffed by at least one paid organiser who is responsible for the day to day running of the scheme. At Home-Start South East Dorset the staff consists of a Scheme Manager, 2 Co-ordinators, 1 Scheme Secretary and 1 Family Group Leader. They in turn are employed by a management board - all volunteers themselves (some of them also home-visiting volunteers) - with experience in a variety of related areas and a commitment to the aims and ethos of the organisation.
The support offered to families is free and confidential. Being a parent, wherever you live or whatever the situation, is not easy. Everybody needs a hand sometimes and Home-Start can be a lifeline to parents just when it is needed most.
For more information on Home-Start nationally and internationally, or to find a scheme local to you, please visit Home-Start UK