A successful partnership between Sanctuary Housing and Hackney Playbus has delivered play and learning opportunities to more than 150 local children.
Hackney Playbus has been operating for more than 40 years, with the aims of providing free play and learning opportunities for children across East London and providing support to families who need it the most.
As well as offering children a regular opportunity to play, the sessions on Well Street Common provided a valuable service for parents and carers, who were able to meet new people and find out more about the family support services available in the area.
Of the parents and carers who attended the sessions, 64 per cent said their children had tried something new for the very first time.
More than three-quarters said they had learned new parenting skills or ideas, 88 per cent said they had shared knowledge or experience with others and 94 per cent made new friends by coming to the sessions.
One local mum who attended the sessions with her eight-month old child said: “Visiting the Playbus has been the highlight of our week and such a refuge of friendship and support.
“I cannot tell you how blessed we feel to have had such a wonderful service literally on our doorstep.”
Another added: “It’s a great place for children to play together in a safe environment and to meet other parents from the local community.”
Claire Lindsay, of Hackney Playbus, commented: “Our mission is to provide play, learning and support to socially excluded families and the biggest success of these sessions has been in bringing people together in their local community.
“We have seen strong friendships form between parents and carers, creating support networks that will continue long beyond the lifetime of this project.”
Toby Moore, Sanctuary’s neighbourhood partnership manager, added: “Providing opportunities for our residents to learn new skills and live happy, healthy lives is one of our biggest priorities.
“We were keen to support Hackney Playbus to bring its valuable service to Well Street Common and it’s clear the sessions have been a big success and had a real positive impact for people in our local community.”
For more information about Hackney Playbus and a full timetable of its sessions, visit the Hackney Playbus website.
This project is part-funded by Sanctuary’s Community Investment Fund, supporting projects which benefit Sanctuary residents and their communities.