Gainsborough: Home-Start volunteers to protest against funding cuts

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Home-Start volunteers will be protesting in Lincoln on Friday against funding cuts being made by Lincs County Council.

The group, made up of eight local Home-Start Schemes has said that the removal of 100 per cent of their local authority funding means many of them may not survive long enough to secure other income.

The cuts, made by Lincs County Council, could see 560 vulnerable families lose support and the role of 500 volunteers put at risk.

Across Lincolnshire the eight Home-Start Schemes provide free, emotional confidential support and practical help for families facing difficulties.

Support is provided by carefully selected and trained volunteers who have parenting experience, and support is tailored depending on the needs of the family.

Chair of Gainsborough Home-Start, Gill Ogden, said: “We are in an unfortunate position.”

“We have got some Big Lottery funding but our support will be reduced.”

“Home-Start is something I believe in.”

“We monitor our volunteers very closely and we look at who would suit a family based on their background and experience.”

“We will have enough funding for a couple more years from the lottery money but we won’t be able to support the families that need a lot of help.”

“There are four levels of need and we will be able to provide levels one and two now. But no longer three and four which we have been doing locally.”

“We have always believed in doing what we could. It is very sad.”

“I understand what the county council are saying but I am concerned about the future.”

“I feel very strongly about the work Home-Start do.”

Home-Start in Lincolnshire has been providing one-to-one support for parents and families for the past 30 years and has proved itself to be a crucial support network for local families struggling with a variety of issues ranging from debt, domestic abuse, inadequate housing, mental ill health, disabilities or isolation.