Dawn Primarolo MP Minister for Children came to visit the Children’s Centre at Alderwood Primary School on the Avery Hill estate on Wednesday.
Mrs Primarolo was invited by the school to open the Maritime Midwives outreach unit at the Children’s Centre. Mrs Primarolo spent a great deal of time talking to volunteers and staff about the services the centre provides for local parents. She visited the parents and toddler pop-in and the crèche where she spoke with parents who told her how valuable the centre was to them and their children.
The Midwives will be permanently based at the centre and will provide an outreach service for parents across the Eltham area.
Mrs Primarolo said, “It is always a pleasure to visit children’s centres and hear from the people that use them how much they value the services they provide. The Midwives being based at there is exactly the sort of development we want to see it means that there is a seamless link between local healthcare and child support services in the heart of the community.”
Clive Efford MP for Eltham said, “I was extremely impressed by the enthusiasm and compassion of the people who work at the centre and how much the parents appreciate the services they provide. This centre works not just because of the resources the government and council have put into it but because of the people in it. It is a good feeling to have a hand in bringing that about.”
John James head of Alderwood School said, “Having the Midwives based here allows for early intervention prior to the birth of the children to provide help and support to parents. The children’s centre can work in partnership with the parents and their children and this is improving attitudes to education and we can see the affects in our foundation stage.”
Dawn and Clive also met the Home Start volunteer service, the Toy Library, and workers from the teams that advise mothers on breast feeding and how to care for children’s teeth. Greenwich Local Labour and business also provide an outreach service and Dawn and Clive met two workers who they had placed on a six month placement at the centre in preparation for going on to find full time employment.