A day of pampering was on the cards yesterday for a group of volunteers as Home–Start Amber Valley gave thanks to its members.
The Wellington Street, Ripley-based branch of the charity laid on a range of free treatments for its 20 home workers at Alfreton’s Community Fire Station on Turnpike Business Park, ranging from pedicures to manicures and massages.
Co-ordinator for the charity Sharon Taylor said: “This is all about saying thank you to our volunteers.
“We thought they are giving up their time to go out selflessly and support families.
“This is about getting them a bit of time to themselves.”
Home–Start Amber Valley offers support and guidance to families with young children in the area, with the aim of improving youngsters’ quality of life –and in some cases can prevent tots from being taken into care.
Families are referred to the charity by social workers and children’s centres among other means and the volunteers, all of whom are parents themselves, are then matched to appropriate homes.
The volunteers are assessed initially and undergo a ten-week training course before they are assigned. They are then required to visit a family for two or three hours a week offering moral and emotional support.
Lollipop lady Diane Mold, 48, was one such home visitor taking advantage of the free treatments on offer. The Matlock mum of three joined the Ripley–based charity six years ago after her mother died: “I just thought I could give back what my mum gave to me,” she said.
“I’ve had some challenging families but it’s been rewarding for me, it gives me a heck of a lot back.”
Ripley pampering experts LS Beauty, based at Church Street, carried out all the treatments free-of-charge on the day.
Owner Leanne Brocklehurst said: “It’s been really successful so we might do this as an annual thing – all the volunteers have loved it I think.
“It’s been great for them because everyone is getting a treatment and it’s been great for us because it is a chance to let people know what we do.”
Co-ordinator Sharon is hoping events such as this will encourage more people to take up a volunteering role with the charity.
“We are always looking out for new volunteers,” she said. “We always seem to have more families than volunteers, but it would be nice if that were the other way round.”
Anyone interested in joining Home-Start Amber Valley should call its Wellington Street offices on 01773 746264. The next set of training courses is set to start in September.
LS Beauty is at 26-28 Church Street, Ripley, and appointments can be made on 01773 741386.