What is a Family Support Group?

As well as our home-visiting service, Home-Start Portsmouth also runs family support groups at a variety of Sure Start and Children's Centres around Portsmouth.
The groups are lead by a member of Home-Start Portsmouth staff - a group facilitator - and run for 48 weeks of the year, which means they are open during most of the school holidays.
All of our groups last for 2 hours and are split into two halves.
In the first hour:

  • children are cared for in a crèche setting and parents go to another room for some 'me time'
  • parents get a chance to 'offload' by talking about their week
  • visitors may come to give advice and support on the topics that have been requested by the families
  • our group facilitators will 'point families in the right direction' if they can think of other services and agencies that might help
  • lots of tea and coffee is drunk!

In the second hour:

  • all of the families come together
  • parents find out about different ways to play with their children
  • the children get to interact with others, share equipment and make friends
  • there may be a craft / cooking activity for people to join in with
  • children are provided with a healthy snack


What families say about our groups

It's a great opportunity to 'vent'

I love having that time with other adults

The activities are really fun

I have made lots of new friends

It has made me realise that it's not just me who finds things tough

It gives me something to look forward to every week

The group worker is really friendly

It has been wonderful and has broken my isolation


Where and When?

Tuesdays: 9.30 - 11.30 @ North End Children's Centre
Wednesdays: 12.45 - 2.45 @ Somerstown Children's Centre
Thursdays 12.45 - 2.45 @ Paulsgrove Children's Centre

 F j6 families children flowers

Referring to a group

Referring families to one of our groups is done in exactly the same way as for our home-visiting service. (Unfortunately, if you turn up unexpectedly it is unlikely you will be able to join in as there will not be enough crèche spaces planned.)


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