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Barnardos works with children and families in the heart of local communities.
Barnardos supported 21,186 children and families in 2019, across its 40 centres, higher than any other year on record by:
We also provided a range of specialist programmes such as a Guardian Ad Litem service, a Post Adoption Advice Service, a Bereavement Counselling Service, Roots of Empathy (a school based programme delivered in the classroom), and Wizards of Words (a paired reading programme in which older volunteers to read with children aged 7-9).
All of our services work to improve the lives of children and their parents so that they can continue to thrive long after our work with them is completed.
Mary is a little girl who we had started working with earlier this year. She had been attending Barnardos Early Years services and the team had been supporting her family in managing an additional needs diagnosis.
Throughout lockdown, Mary was at home with her family, and it was a struggle. Mary’s routine was so important to her, and now the family found themselves in unfamiliar territory - trying to manage Mary’s routine as well as managing and supporting their other two children who are older than Mary. Mary’s Dad is also working from home, so her Mam is trying to manage a lot by herself so they can keep Dad’s income stable.
One thing Barnardos was supporting Mary and her family with, was getting her toilet trained. Barnardos’ Early Intervention team have a specific programme that they use and Mary was due to start that. Instead, the team supported Mary’s parents over the phone and by email in executing this programme themselves, and checked in regularly to see how it was going.
The family also benefited from food packages; they’d gotten by on the basics beforehand but because everyone was home all day, they needed a little extra support. One of their local Barnardos support workers dropped by a weekly bundle to their gate, and the family have her phone number should they need anything else urgently.
To help with entertaining the children, Mary’s parents have also been given a list of free games and activities to do with their children. The team have also left in arts and crafts materials and the family have been enjoying making things together and displaying them in their windows for passers-by to enjoy.
The Barnardos team are keeping in touch with Mary’s Mam to make sure she’s getting the emotional support she needs too. We’ll be there whenever we’re needed.