Summer News from Barnardos

All thanks to you 

We understand that times are difficult for so many at the moment, so we’re incredibly grateful to have the continued support of people like you. Below is just a snapshot of what you’ve achieved through your support. That’s something so special to be a part of, because childhood lasts a lifetime.

Ryan, age 12, and his little sister Leah, who is six, live with their grandmother, Frances.

Unfortunately, their parents have suffered with addiction issues for some time, and it was not safe for the children to continue living with them.

Ryan had been struggling in school. He couldn’t focus and wouldn’t participate in class, or spend much time with the other children. At home, he was very quiet, but could suddenly get very upset about what seemed like small things. Frances reached out to their family support worker, who suggested that Barnardos might be able to offer some support.

Ryan had seen his parents drink heavily at home and heard them shout and fight. He was feeling so many emotions but did not know how to manage them. His parent’s arguments used to keep him awake at night and he was scared that they might really hurt each other, or even himself or his sister.

Even though Ryan is now safe with his grandmother, having experienced such traumatic events and being so frightened, was resulting in him becoming easily upset when his emotions would build up. With his project worker Trudy, he started learning to put words on these feelings. Sad. Worried. Nervous. It was good to talk, and also to be heard. Trudy also introduced Ryan to breathing exercises, which helped him to regulate his mood and feel calmer.

Frances said to Trudy that she is seeing such a positive difference in Ryan. He is now more open to talk freely about how he feels and she said he just seems lighter in himself.

His little sister Leah is attending a Barnardos After School group. Here she is finding support in developing positive relationships with other children and learning to manage her emotions. Like her big brother, she is using these new-found skills to communicate with her Nana, and other adults in her life. Being able to do this helps those adults to give her the support that she needs at this difficult time in her young life.

Ryan and Leah’s parents have been accessing support they need to manage their own problems. They have been able to have phone conversations with their children, with Ryan and Leah’s feelings always being considered first. It is our hope that they can work towards starting to rebuild a healthy relationship together, as a family. We’ll be there to support them for as long as they need us.

 

 

Ciaran loves Story time

Ciaran’s favourite time when coming to Barnardos is story time. He and the other children get to get comfortable, and relax and listen as Sophie, one of the project workers at the centre, reads them a story.

Ciaran would curl up inside the Lycra tunnel, a stretchy, comfortable tunnel where he can see out but no one can see in – he just loves it!

Ciaran’s dad is also coming to Barnardos to attend the Parents Group, where parents of children attending Barnardos are learning about emotional regulation. Sometimes parents haven’t had a lot of positive attachment in their own childhoods, which can make it difficult for them to know how to nurture their own child(ren).

By coming to the parents group, Ciaran’s dad has found the support that he needed himself, and is learning how he can recreate a safe, calm, nurturing environment at home for Ciaran.

Your support is doing so much good for Ciaran and his dad, and so many families like them!

These are a few of my favourite things!

Some of the children attending our services share their favourite things about Barnardos:

“The Food (toast, snacks, drinks), playing games with project workers, fidget toys, I like coming to Barnardos to talk about my feelings”

“Just coming here, I go in I could be in a bad mood but when I leave I’m always in a good mood”

“I feel it sort of improved my life, like you know the way it was going a few years ago”

“I like dinners and playing on the motorbike in the garden, planning time, small groups, circle, puppets”

“Noodles, it’s fun, it’s a safe place”

“I love it, just talking about everything”

 

The importance of monthly gifts

Monthly donations play such an important role in the work that we do in Barnardos. They allow us to plan into the future; to plan how we can support children and families who have faced or are currently facing adversity.

They enable us to give more children vital help – not only today, but also tomorrow and into the future. They give us the possibility to make long-term plans and make sure that no child is left behind.

There is more pressure than ever on families around Ireland at the moment, with increased prices on food, fuel and daily living expenses.

If you are in a position to become a monthly donor, we would be so grateful. Whatever you can afford to donate, will be so gratefully received.

You can sign up here

(choose the Monthly tab)

If you already donate monthly to Barnardos – THANK YOU. We hope through our communications, you know how much we – and the families we work with – value the support that you are giving.