MEN’S HEALTH WEEK: HOW CONNECT FERMANAGH PROVIDES SUPPORT AND CONNECTION FOR LOCALS EXPERIENCING ISOLATION
Men’s Health Week, which runs every year in the week before Father’s Day, has been focu...
Lisnaskea Mother and Toddler Group with (front) Annabelle Ferguson and Emer McGuigan from ‘Now You’re Talking Fermanagh’.
(Back) Gerda Walmsley, Frank McManus Chairman of the Fermanagh Trust and Caroline Rice.
The Fermanagh Trust has provided a funding boost to Lisnaskea Mother and Toddler Group. The group will use their grant towards equipment, resources and new services to support parents and children.
The Mother and Toddler group is open to all parents, grandparents and childminders with children under 5 – Monday, Tuesday and Friday 10am-12. In operation for over 10 years, the group provides a safe environment for children to play and make new friendships whilst providing stimulation through various play development areas.
There are a range of activities for both children and adults in order to support child development including messy play, Jo Jingles, health nutrition, role play and Small World. Every Friday, speech therapists Annabelle Ferguson and Emer McGuigan from the ‘Now You’re talking Fermanagh’ project visit the group to provide ‘Rhyme and Chyme’ in order to promote speech, language and communication skills. The pilot scheme hopes to extend to evenings and extra days with community support.
Group leaders Caroline Rice and Gerda Walmsley said “We would like to thank the Fermanagh Trust for their support which provides a very welcome boost for our group. There are no other services in the Lisnaskea area for the early years age and their families. We have a good support network within the community and surrounding areas. We find that if parents are supported and children develop awareness in these early years, that they are less likely to have difficulties in the early years of schools.”
Going forward the group plan to make their premises a parenting hub, a place where parents can come to seek support in the early years of parenting. Many parents have no support structure so coming to the group and forming relationships with the leaders and other adults allow them to gain the support and confidence they need to parent.
Frank McManus, Chairman of the Fermanagh Trust said “We are delighted to award this grant to Lisnaskea Mother and Toddler Group. The organisation has flourished under the leadership of Caroline and Gerda who oversee the group on a voluntary basis. It is important to support our Mother and Toddler Groups as they provide an invaluable resource for families and the local community. We wish the group continued success as a much needed service within Lisnaskea.”
For more information on the Fermanagh Trust's grant programme CLICK HERE