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Questions about Surestart

(6 Posts)
MommyUpNorth Tue 15-Jul-08 16:54:26

Hello. I've just had a call from our local Surestart coordinator and they'd like to send someone out this Thursday to arrange taking ds (19 months) to the play sessions on for the summer holidays.

This all came about as I was enquiring about direct payments to hire some help for the summer. We're still on the SS waiting list, and it's likely to be a long time yet.

Anyway, this lovely man was telling me all about the things they could do for us... pick up ds and take him to the play session and then bring him back home (this is a 30 mile round trip!). My other ds (4 years) could go to the other playscheme run for older siblings between nursery and school age. We could have someone take all 3 older children out while I do something with ds, or take ds out or watch him here while I go out with the older kids.

This all sounds a little too good to be true really... so can I ask if anyone else has had any experience with Surestart?? Is this the norm? Who pays for this?

The only drawback is that the lady who could do it is only available until the end of summer, so he said there would be a lapse in help until they find someone else. I was only after someone to come and play with him for an hour or so a couple times a week, so this is just beyond belief!

TotalChaos Tue 15-Jul-08 17:59:51

IME of Surestart, they can be surprisingly well resourced. E.g. the Hanen course Surestart run has a free creche and you get copies of the book for free, whereas with the Hanen Course SALT run there's no creche and you have to give the book back at the end of the course. And I've heard of another Surestart having the funds for families to have free holidays to Centreparcs. So I would cross my fingers and hope all happens as promised.

MannyMoeAndJack Tue 15-Jul-08 18:06:00

This sounds like very good provision, especially for such a young child - I've lost count of the number of times that SS have told me that 'ds is still very young; most SN children don't access services until they're about 7yrs old' and similar budget-preserving diktats.

Grab what they offer you with both hands before they change their minds!!

MommyUpNorth Wed 16-Jul-08 08:43:57

Thanks for the replies. I told dh about it when he got in from work, and he was a bit floored as well. I suppose I'll just wait and see what they say on Thursday after they meet us!

sarah293 Wed 16-Jul-08 08:46:40

Message withdrawn

anxiousmax Wed 16-Jul-08 14:16:12

Surestart can be fantastic. I think there is a criterea. 3 children & one i think must be of pre school age.
My friend uses them her eldest has sn she gets someone one afternoon a week & she gets to choose what she uses the surestart person for. normally they look after the kids while she either goes for a walk or swim or does something just for herself and i don't think it has an impact on the other services she is entitled to. She still gets dp's for her ds.

I hope you get some useful support.

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