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Holiday fun helps keep parent safe space running




A West Norfolk support group who provide a “safe, open space” for parents welcomed roughly 100 people to a half-term family fundraiser.

West Norfolk Calm Families, which is based at Wimbotsham Village Hall, raised £360 in aid of the non-profit organisation which is open to parents on Tuesday mornings from 10am to noon.

Trustee Roma Malone said: “There is not enough support at the moment, especially with government cuts. It is really hard for some people to get the right sort of information.

Amy McColl of Hartbeeps is pictured in the centre. Pictures: Michael Fysh
Amy McColl of Hartbeeps is pictured in the centre. Pictures: Michael Fysh

“We need more evidence based on the development of mental health rather than just outdated advice for people who struggle to get out.”

As well as general parenting advice, the group provide sleep and breastfeeding information, sling support and baby weighing scales to locals.

Mrs Malone, who has children aged three-years-old and three-months, has teamed up with fellow trustee Louise Hamilton, and together they are applying for funding to help run the service.

Organisers Roma Malone and Louise Hamilton
Organisers Roma Malone and Louise Hamilton

The family fundraiser event was held in the village hall on Tuesday with various activities taking place including a raffle, slime-making workshop, tombola and trampolining courtesy of Bounce Fitness Classes.

Amy McColl of Hartbeeps also provided dancing and music for the youngsters.

Mrs Malone added: “This is the first one of these we have ever done of that size. We may try to do another one if we need more funding.

Half Term Family Fund Raiser IAO West Norfolk Calm Families Community Hub at Wimbotsham Village Hall. Pictured with face painter Chelsea Middleton are Ava, Jake, Emily and Max
Half Term Family Fund Raiser IAO West Norfolk Calm Families Community Hub at Wimbotsham Village Hall. Pictured with face painter Chelsea Middleton are Ava, Jake, Emily and Max

“My mum was there to help me out on the day.”

The group is applying for funding from the Norfolk Early Childhood and Family Service to provide more resources for the group, increased training for the volunteers as well as more slings to stock.

Both Mrs Malone and Mrs Hamilton have young children and have struggled with postnatal depression and a lack of correct information being available to parents.

They say that much of the advice parents receive can make life harder and heaps too much pressure on them when making them feel they are doing the wrong things.

This is because the information they receive does not match up with what babies and toddlers really need or how their brain develops.

The community group is accessible to all families on Tuesday mornings at Wimbotsham with a suggested donation of £2, which includes refreshments.

For more information about the group, search for West Norfolk Calm Families Community Hub on Facebook.


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