Friday, 4 May 2012

Making a SureStart

I have always believed that people are goal-oriented, that we need goals, work towards to maintain our mental health. That probably sounds a bit dramatic. All I mean to say is that without things to work towards I think we (or maybe just I?) can drift and lose our sense of purpose.

So having a year, a whole 366 days since it's a leap year, without having to go to work, with my only purpose to give Josh the best start would be easy to fall into a malaise of feeding, sleeping and nappy changing. I had always intended to start going to some mum and baby groups to give structure to my week but I think it would have been a lot more difficult without SureStart.

SureStart is a national service for parents and children from pregnancy through until the start of school. We have a local SureStart centre in Oundle and I can honestly say they have been great. They run several classes and groups from drop-in coffee sessions through messy play to baby massage, and they are all free of charge.

Through the Weigh and Play sessions I have had the opportunity to meet other mums (and a few dads!) when I am already going in to have Little Monster weighed. I've also been attending the baby massage course which is an amazing way to bond with your baby. After the massage, all the babies have a feed and drift off to sleep while the mums chat which is currently my favourite part of the week - I think it relaxes me as much as him!

So yay for SureStart and boo for the budget cuts which are threatening to severely reduce the available activities and sessions! SureStart has been an absolute lifesaver for me and I really believe the srevices they offer are good for keeping you busy, giving your week structure and fighting off Postnatal Depression. If you get the chance, make the most of it while you can.

I'd love to hear your experiences of SureStart in your area!

1 comment:

  1. Our sure start centre in Southam is fantastic. The building is owned by the Congregational church and there are other activities in the centre as well as a cafe as it is one of their outreach projects. We are really really lucky as it has some great groups we have been to a postnatal course, babytime, baby massage, baby first aid, breastfeeding cafe and they do an outreach stay and play/music & movement/baby signing in our village as it doesn't have any baby/toddler groups. We also bought Healthy Start vitamins (much cheaper than in the shops). I didn't realise just how great it would be for me for fending off PND and getting out to meet people - I've only been to two other groups one was baby sensory which was great fun and the other was a baby/toddler group in a rather cold church.
    Boo indeed for cuts.