Home-Start

Home-Start

Home-Start

Home-Start is a family and community program that supports families with young children who may be struggling with a variety of issues related to parenting. We invite families to enlarge their circles of support by making connections with our trained volunteers as well as discover ways to build their own communities. It is a simple idea that really works! Our volunteers know about being a parent, and offer encouragement, companionship and practical assistance to other parents.

Together we support each other in creating healthy communities where children grow and develop, families flourish and neighbors support one another.

Home-Start is an international program that in Calgary is offered by Boys and Girls Clubs of Calgary. Home-Start operates in over 20 different countries around the world. The Home-Start logo stands for friendship: we practice this by offering regular support, encouragement and connection through our volunteers and communities. All across the world, Home-Start works towards the increased confidence and independence of families: we believe that each family has strengths and that at times, we all need a little help from one another.

We're looking for volunteers! 

Home-Start volunteers visit a family once per week from 2 to 4 hours, provide support and friendship, gets the family involved with the community and shares their own experiences of parenting. Please contact Claudia Sanchez, Home-Start Coordinator at 403-660-1136 or at csanchez@bgcc.ab.ca for more information about our program.

Who can access Home Start?
Families with at least one child under the age of 5 who are experiencing a wide range of difficulties such as isolation, post-partum depression, and parenting stresses.

Home-Start is available to all families regardless of socio-economic or ethnic background. We are committed to the rights of the individual and recognition of the diversity within families.  

What can I expect from Home-Start?
  • Support and practical assistance from a trained volunteer who will meet regularly with you in your home for up to one year.
  • Reassurance and understanding of parenting experiences, encouragement to see your family’s strengths and widen your network of relationships and connections to community supports and resources.

How can I access Home-Start?
Referrals to Home-Start can come directly from the family or a referral source such as a nurse, agency, or social worker.

Our Home-Start Coordinators are the first point of contact: they connect with the family to assess family needs and to begin the matching process or to refer to another service. Home-Start Coordinators remain available and make regular connections to families and volunteers.

Who can become a Home-Start Volunteer?
Individuals who have care-giving experiences, usually because they have been a parent themselves. Individuals with communication skills who want to offer a listening ear, encouragement and support, model healthy relationships, and strengthen family well-being.

All volunteers initially complete a 30 hour preparation course and afterwards continue to gather support and training from regular Volunteer Support meetings/events. Volunteers usually give two to three hours of time per week to visit and support their family. 

Watch this video to learn more about Home-Start.

Home Start Video Screen Shot

For more info about Home-Start, please contact:
North Calgary, 403-660-6809
South Calgary, 403-660-1136

Home-Start Brochure
www.homestartinternational.org

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I am grateful not only for the friendship but also for the practical support. - Home-Start Parent

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