Thursday 14th July, 2016

Fun for Twos

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Fun for Twos is a new group that meets at Romsey Mill Children's Centre each Friday.  The group was established by the Children's Centre to engage with families eligible for 2 year old funding but not accessing it. Fun for Twos encourages them to take up the offer and enable their children to gain confidence and new skills.

Two years ago, Luke and Laura had baby Asa. Born at 32 weeks, he spent the first month of his life in hospital. The couple had previously lost baby Leo, who was born at 26 weeks and died of an infection. Despite being premature, Asa was healthy and developed well, but just after his 1st birthday Laura fell ill. Initially it was thought to be flu but she developed a rash and purple spots - the onset of staphylococcal, a blood infection. Six days later, Laura had a stroke and had paralysis of her right side. She was in hospital for 7 weeks, needing major heart surgery to prevent further strokes. She was given a 1 in 4 chance of survival. During this time, Luke looked after Asa and visited the hospital twice a day. As a result, he was forced to give up his job as a carpenter.

Despite living close to Romsey Mill, they did not know about our Children’s Centre or Pre-school provision. That changed in January when they received a letter inviting them to attend Fun for Twos - a group established by the Children’s Centre to engage and support families eligible for Two Year old funding but who weren’t accessing this offer;  and to encourage them to take it up  so that children gain confidence and social skills. 

They came as a family each week and Asa quickly settled and started to interact with other children. Despite feeling very protective of Asa, Luke and Laura were keen to explore the pre-school provision. They loved what they saw and instantly felt that they could trust the staff so they were supported in completing an application.

Asa started at Romsey Pre-school in April and now attends 9hrs a week. This has been hugely significant for the family and is really helping Asa develop and learn.  Luke and Laura said: “Asa loved the Friday sessions. They gave him space to run around. It was a stepping stone for him and he learnt to interact with other children. He loves pre-school and he’s learning so much. He’s calmed down and is learning to listen to others. We feel so encouraged by the support and feedback of staff at Romsey Mill. We’re so grateful that the Children’s Centre contacted us and gave us help and advice as it meant we got involved in the group and then got a place at pre-school.”

Fun for Twos meets at Romsey Mill Children’s Centre Fridays 10am-11.30pm. For information call the Children’s Centre on 01223 566102 or email Childrenscentre@romseymill.org