Parents who attend The Family Haven benefit from:

  • Supervised nursery for children
  • Making friends and meeting people
  • Healthy eating/cooking workshops
  • Washing and drying machines
  • Talks and information sessions
  • A sitting room with television
  • Free second hand clothing
  • Basic welfare advice
  • Parenting classes
  • Personal development
  • Alternative therapies
  • Hot home-made lunch
  • Day trips for the whole family
  • Counselling skills

During each year we aim to:

  • Run a Personal Development course over a 6-8 week period with a target of 40 attendees; we had 203 attendances for the 2016 sessions. Example topics covered include: Confidence Building, Reducing fuel poverty, Looking after yourself, Dealing with anger, Letting go of Anxiety
  • Run two Parenting Skills courses during the year, also for 40 attendees; we had a total 147 attendances in the 2 courses running in the 2015-2016 financial year. Example topics covered include: Child development, Learning through play, Child health, Behaviour, Home and road safety, Language development, Sleeping habits, Potty training, Starting school
  • Hold an Every Day First Aid course (usually alternate year as we reach more new families this way)
  • Provide Art & Craft sessions
  • Provide additional one off sessions that run throughout the year, the number and content of these varies year on year.
  • Provide weekly Healthy Eating sessions, both practical (where the family can take home the meal they make) and theory (such as how to feed a family on a budget)

In the year to 31st March 2016, parents benefited from English Classes run by Adult education, yoga sessions, baby massage,, in house parenting classes and personal development sessions. We also had some nail art sessions and Christmas craft sessions.

A recent survey of our parents showed that they appreciated the benefits of our services and described them as ‘a unique combination of provision for both parent and child, with the knowledge that children are safe and happy while the parents get out of the house, relax, make friends and have a bit of time to themselves and gain the confidence to make a difference to their lives’. They also say:

Without the Haven I wouldn’t have such a good group of friends.

I was very isolated and depressed when the children and I began at the Haven. My children had severe separation anxiety. I am now beginning to get out a little more.

I came to Gloucester with my partner and 2 year old son from the South East, we were fleeing violence. People in the community were threatening us and I was very scared. Due to this I lost my confidence and was afraid to leave the house on my own.

When I first came to The Family Haven I was quiet and timid, I wouldn’t say boo to a goose. Coming here helped me come out of my shell; it got me out of the house. I got to know other people and made friends. I built up confidence to get a little part time job for a while. The Staff helped me with problems like money difficulties; they supported me when I was down. They got me confident in doing hairdressing again and even provided a place for me to start doing hair for other people at The Haven.

My children love coming here even the older one who is now at school. He would prefer to come here than go to school.

This is my home away from home, this is my second home. I don’t know what I would have done if they weren’t here, it’s been a life saver for me. The Haven has done more for me than my own family.”