The King’s Hedges Family Support Project (KHFSP) was set up in 1995 in order to provide family support to families in need, initially in the King’s Hedges area of Cambridge. It now runs three open access drop-ins in three separate Wards in Cambridge City, chosen for their high levels of deprivation in a comparatively prosperous city and county.
We believe that confident parenting makes for happier children. We aim to help parents to feel confident to make the choices that are important to them. We work in a welcoming and non-judgemental way. Our staff are kind, approachable and knowledgeable. We help to reduce feelings of isolation and increase a sense of community and offer a high quality, safe place to play, relax and talk. We work actively with partners and connect families to them, ensuring they have access to relevant information and advice.
Our drop-in sessions aim to provide families who have babies and pre-school children a chance to socialise and to play together, with the support of trained and experienced Family and Play Workers. Family support workers welcome and settle new families, and provide information about the community and all that it can offer. They can work alongside parents, who may feel the need for extra support on everyday parenting issues, sleeping, feeding, on child development, or on more complex financial concerns, housing advice, budgeting and the ups and downs of family relationships. Family Support Workers can also work alongside parents in requesting more specialist help or assistance. Our project aims to ensure that we are both preventative (through guidance, support and advice) and reactive (in the case of families in crisis).
Parents facilitate a healthy lunch for their children; low cost, healthy eating. It helps familiarise children to sitting and sharing together, and also models sensible portion size and good hygiene practices.
The impact for families of attending our sessions includes:
- Improved confidence in parenting
- reduced social isolation,
- improved mental health and wellbeing,
- support with housing issues,
- improved family relationships and be safer from abuse,
- support if parents are ready to return to employment
- children will be better prepared to begin school