Community Engagement Manager, Fiona Saville, reflects on a packed summer for our engagement team and looks ahead to autumn plans:
“Our intrepid engagement team has been involved in over 30 activities and events across the Better Start Bradford area this summer, ranging from targeted outreach to supporting local groups in applying to the Parents in the Lead Activities Fund, plus numerous localised activities with new and existing Better Start Bradford partners.
You may have seen Humera and Sally at one of the local parks supporting Bradford Literature Festival’s fantastic Literature Unlocked events or with our Neighbourhood Workers and Better Place partners completing community consultation. Whatever the activity, the team is always sure to give you a warm welcome and keep you up to date with all things Better Start Bradford!
Some of the highlights have been:
- Making over 1400 contacts with families in the Better Start Bradford area over an 8-week period
- Promoting the Better Start Bradford app to each and every one of those contacts
- Distributing over 500 ‘Summer of Fun’ activity packs with families with children aged 0-3
- Picnicking with grandparents and introducing them to our Older Yet Wiser programme
- Leading party games with children and getting parents to join in too!
- Reading stories to little ones at teddy bears picnics
- Picking litter and singing along with our Community Champion Raymond at various community clean up events
- Introducing children to nature and helping collect eggs in Attock Park
- Racing go-karts with dads and grandads at the Literature Unlocked events
- Waving some of the children we’ve worked with off to school
- Welcoming new communities at SHINE
- Joining our Busy Bee’s group for cuppas and catch-ups
- Blowing bubbles with Better Place
- And finally, finishing our summer with a collective bang at our show-stopping circus events!
Nethertheless, there’s no time to waste and we’ve have already planned our programme of autumn activity. Watch out for ‘Meet the Family’ events with local schools, the Community Stars Awards, street visits (on a doorstep near you) and our infamous Festive Fun events (this year there may be a bit of a twist…). We’ll also be keeping our families nurtured with free ‘Winter Wellbeing’ kits.
We are also truly delighted to welcome Zafar Kayani (pictured above on the left) to the team! His role is to engage male carers and he has wasted no time in terms of meeting dads, grandads and any other males involved in caring for young children. If you see him out and about be sure to say hello! He brings a wealth of knowledge and over 30 years’ experience working in the Bradford district.
So, together with Humera, Sally and I, we continue to ensure that the Better Start Bradford engagement team really is the face of the community!”