Wednesday, 19 September 2012

'Thursdays Together' Project Gets Further Lottery Funding

‘Thursdays Together ’, part of the Kings Hedges Family Support Project, celebrates the success and impact of the project’s last 5 years and announces further funding from the Big Lottery Fund.

Thursdays Together was fully funded by the Big Lottery Fund from April 2007 – March 2012 through the Reaching Communities Programme. With further funding from the Big Lottery Fund’s Supporting Change and Impact programme, the project has commissioned an external evaluation of the Thursdays Together project which will be launched at a celebration event on the 20th September. Guest Speakers at the celebration will be Sara Betsworth, Big Lottery Fund Head of Eastern England Region, and Julian Huppert MP.

A further announcement will be made that the project has now been awarded another 5 years full funding (£186,576) for Thursdays Together from Big Lottery Fund’s Reaching Communities programme. This funding means that Thursdays Together will be able to continue to provide a wide range of timely and preventative family support services, reducing isolation, offering opportunities for improvement and enrichment to health, well being, life skills and family life.

The drop-in sessions provide a welcoming space for around 100 local adults, babies and pre-school aged children to meet and to enjoy a variety of creative play, outdoor activities, music, gardening and healthy meals. The drop-in sessions, held for 50 weeks of the year, help local families gain in skills, knowledge and information, enabling parents and carers to gain confidence and enjoyment in their role as primary care givers. Family Support Workers are on hand to provide timely advice and help where needed.

The Project works with parents and primary care givers, and weekly sessions are held on Thursdays 10.00 a.m. until 2.00 p.m. at The Brown’s Field Youth and Community Centre, Green End Road, Chesterton. Parts of East Chesterton are amongst the 20 most deprived areas of Cambridgeshire (English Indices of Multiple Deprivation 2010). Evidence demonstrates that early interventions, within an accessible community provision, reduce the need for more costly specialist support services later on.

Lynn Tumber, Project Manager said “It is truly fantastic that the Big Lottery Fund has funded the project as it will enable us to continue working with local families, growing and developing with them in their Community.”

Cambridge MP Julian Huppert said: “I am delighted to be able to join in with the celebrations following this excellent news.

“Thursdays Together not only provides a fun environment for youngsters who have the chance to take part in a variety of activities but it also offers vital support to parents and carers. Family life can be challenging and it’s helpful to know there are other people going through the same experiences and expert advice on hand.

“This project has proved invaluable and I am delighted the National Lottery will continue to give it the funding support it deserves.”

The Big Lottery Fund distributes half of the National Lottery good cause funding across the UK.  The Fund aims to enable others to make real improvements to communities and the lives of people most in need.