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28th Nov, 2021

Voluntary group expands parent counselling sessions thanks to donation

FREE counselling sessions for Rugby parents are being expanded thanks to a donation to a voluntary group supporting families.

The Parenting Project – which delivers tailored support for parents, young people and their carers – has received a £2,000 grant from a housebuilder which will allow the organisation to expand its services.

The voluntary group, which has limited funding, has been struggling to keep up with unprecedented demand due to the pandemic.

The additional funding has come from CALA Homes Midlands’ Community Bursary scheme.

The Parenting Project estimates the grant will enable the group to support an additional eight parents or carers. And with an average of four individuals to a family group, it estimates up to three dozen adults and children will benefit from the increased service capacity.

Emma Smith, the Parenting Project’s Development Manager, said the funds will go a long way to help them meet increased demands.

She said: “Across the country, families have been struggling to not only make ends meet over the past 18 months – through job losses or furlough – but also to keep family relationships healthy, despite a rise in mental health issues.

“Even prior to the pandemic, MIND’s data showed a quarter of parents experienced problems with their mental health, but additional pressures caused by the pandemic have undoubtedly compounded this issue.

“We help families to manage and overcome these problems with individual support at a time when it’s needed most. In Rugby we deliver support through the children and family centres, providing free 18-week counselling to parents.

“Whether due to anxieties from the pandemic, pressures of home-schooling over lockdown, or family finances becoming over-stretched due to furlough, redundancy, and precarious job prospects, Warwickshire’s families have been in dire need of this additional support.

“Through our tailored counselling, parents are able to explore their own mental health and the resulting impact it can have on their children, before we develop coping and resilience strategies to help them, and their children, better adapt and cope.

“I’d like to say a big thank-you for the vital support from CALA Homes, which will be put towards new and increased services to support some of the region’s most vulnerable.”

The Community Bursary initiative invites charities, voluntary organisations and community groups to apply for a share of funding from CALA, with more than 300 worthy causes now having received over £300,000 since CALA launched the initiative in 2016.

The scheme was paused in 2020 as a result of the March lockdown but was re-launched earlier this year to support groups and charities in need, particularly those which have been impacted by the pandemic.

Andrew Dicker, Regional Managing Director, commented: “The last 12 months have been particularly hard for the charity and volunteering sectors, with many seeing reduced funding at a time when local communities need their services most.

“We know that this funding will mean a great deal to the Parenting Project, and we can’t wait to follow their progress and see how the donations will make a real difference to local people.”

Visit www.cala.co.uk/bursary for more information on the CALA Homes Community Bursary.

Anyone with a child aged 19 or under – or up to age 25 for those with additional needs – can contact the project through their local Children and Family Centre, by emailing counselling@parentingproject.org.uk or by texting 07903 463824.

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