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West Lothian

Because tomorrow starts today

ANNUAL REPORT 2020


Contents What does Home-Start West Lothian do?

3

Management & Accounts Chairperson’s Report Manager’s Report Annual Accounts 2019/2020 Treasurer’s Report

5 7 8 9

Service Delivery Reports Groupwork Report Referrer’s Report Family Support Co-ordinator’s Report

10 13 14

Impact Our Impact Family Case Study

16 18

Volunteers Volunteer Gallery

20

Board and Staff Marketing Report

22 23

Funders & Donors

24

Home-Start West Lothian Cameron House 13a Fairbairn Road Livingston West Lothian EH54 6TS Tel: 01506 415755 email: admin@homestartwl.org.uk www.homestartwl.org.uk Registered in Scotland: SC280852 Registered Charity Number: SC029770 2 Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020


What does Home-Start West Lothian do? Home-Start West Lothian, established in 2000, offers support, friendship and practical help to parents with young children, in communities throughout West Lothian. We offer a unique service, recruiting and training volunteers – who are usually parents themselves – to visit families at home who have at least one child under 5 to offer informal, friendly and confidential support. To help give children the best possible start in life, Home-Start West Lothian supports parents as they grow in confidence, overcome obstacles, strengthen their relationship with their children and widen their links with the local community.

“They don’t take over your life, they encourage you to live it. They empower you. They accept you for who you are. I would recommend Home-Start to everyone.” Supported Family

Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020 3


4 Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020


Chairperson’s Report Since our last AGM, Home-Start West Lothian has continued to offer support and friendship via volunteers to families around West Lothian. Our Christmas party, held in Seafield Community Centre, welcomed the man in the red suit delivering gifts, and a magician who entertained the guests who came. Everyone who attended had a great time. After the festive break everyone at HSWL were back at work full of commitment to ensure all projects were up and running smoothly. Until the Coronavirus struck. Following instructions from the Government all staff commenced a new work pattern – working from home with an odd visit to the office to pick up information required to fulfil their roles. Volunteers engaged with their families by telephone or social media. Volunteer training was held via Zoom. The Manager and a small group of Trustees kept in touch regularly via Zoom to keep up to date and to make decisions if required regarding any issues arising. Groups also used Zoom – to a mixed response – to try and keep the relationships already formed current. Where would we be without Zoom? This has been a difficult time. Staff report that they have been kept busy during lockdown, but I am sure, as with us all, they miss the social contact. Hopefully life will get back to some sort of normality soon. During this time our Manager for two and a half years, Allie, has moved on to a new role – we wish her all the best in her new adventure. Stuart Barrie, our new Manager, has started with us and we all welcome him and hope he will enjoy working at HSWL. A BIG thank you to everyone – Families, Volunteers, Staff, Trustees and Funders and all other supporters who ensure that HSWL is able to provide such a great service to the local community of West Lothian.

“A BIG thank you to everyone – Families, Volunteers, Staff, Trustees and Funders and all other supporters who ensure that Home-Start West Lothian is able to provide such a great service to the local community of West Lothian.”

Louise Taylor, Chairperson Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020 5


Priorities for the future of Home-Start West Lothian ● Continually evaluate what we do so we can provide the very best support for the families we work with ● Increase awareness of what we do for stakeholders and families who may need us ● More development opportunities for our volunteers ● Devise and implement our community fundraising strategy for 2020/2021

6 Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020


Manager’s Report It’s never easy being a parent but the unprecedented COVID-19 crisis has made what can be an isolated, frustrating and at times scary experience even more of a struggle for everyone. The support Home-Start West Lothian brings to families has never been more invaluable as we all faced the life-changing challenge of Coronavirus.  The support and friendship we provide in the form of our group work and support from our amazing volunteers is a life-line to families.    The team can be proud of the way they have adapted to the testing times to help provide that stability, hope and positivity.  Our families know we will be there for them during the tough times to help pave the way for a brighter future and the best possible start in life. Using new technologies, we have adapted the first-class service we provide so that people can engage in new ways and still feel connected to their communities. On behalf of the team at Home-Start West Lothian, I’d like to thank our outgoing manager Allie CherryByrnes for all her hard work and efforts in developing our scheme into the well run Home-Start that is. I joined in May 2020 and it’s a privilege for me to be part of the team. In the last few years I’ve worked for RNIB, Bauer Media and CHAS so I bring a wide variety of skills and experiences to the role. I’m highly motivated to help the team here continue to make a difference in the lives of the children and families we support. My aim for the coming weeks and months is to build on the successes the team have had in supporting families, not only during the COVID crisis but day in day out across the year.    This year’s Annual Report covers the time frame from April 2019 to March 2020 and all the figures are from this time. However as we all know, the world came to a standstill in March as the Coronavirus hit hard. There was only a few weeks of lockdown in March but the impact of the pandemic has literally changed the world. With so much affected we felt it only right that we reflect some of the work and changes Home-Start West Lothian has had to adapt to keep supporting families. We would like to thank Kai Mitchel for helping shape and develop the Home-Start West Lothian Social Media. Thanks and all the best with your next steps. As we move forward we don’t know what the future will bring and how life will be as we emerge from the incredible hardships of the COVID-19 pandemic. We know we will be there for parents when they need us most; and now more than ever, as we adapt to new challenges, we know that Home-Start West Lothian will continually strive to support our families. No matter what is going on in the world we know that childhood can’t wait!

“Our families know we will be there for them during the tough times to help pave the way for a brighter future and the best possible start in life.”

Stuart Barrie, Manager Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020 7


Accounts 2019/2020 INCOME Grant Funding Other Income and Donations

£240,670 £42,740

Total income

£ 283,410

EXPENDITURE Staff costs General Office costs Programme costs Shop Support & Governance Volunteer Travel & Activities

£194,309 £22,215 £13,125 £16,356 £7,532 £5,702

Total expenditure

£259,376

8 Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020


Treasurer’s Report Like many others throughout the country, I am writing this from my home while in Coronavirus lockdown. By the time you read this, I hope that we will have been able to make real progress in the fight against this horrible virus and that you and your family are safe and well. I have been impressed with the speed and flexibility that the HSWL staff and volunteers have shown in moving to working from home and continuing to support our families under the lockdown rules. Thanks to all of you. It’s a testament to the commitment shown from the team that we can continue to provide a high level of support via telephone calls, securing food parcel deliveries and other practical support. I wanted to personally thank our outgoing Manager Allie for the huge effort with the multitude of day to day operations changes within HSWL through these unprecedented times. We wish Allie well in her new role as CEO of Fast Forward. HSWL has a strong financial position due to our funders and good expense management. We continue to see demand for our core services grow and continue to manage a healthy backlog of cases. In presenting this year’s Treasurer‘s Report, I would like to give my thanks to Kim for the administration of our financial records. A big thanks goes to Stella, Liz and Louise for the outstanding work done in completing the HSWL shop venture in Whitburn. Although we made the incredibly difficult decision to cease trading, we are actively looking at other ways we can have a bigger presence in the local community. The ongoing role of West Lothian Council and the Big Lottery, our key funding partners, are critical. Thank you. However, it is the contributions from ALL our funders that enables HSWL to help to our families each year. This year HSWL has been supported by BBC Children in Need, Big Lottery Fund, Chance to Flourish, Garfield Weston, Henry Smith, Phoenix Drilling, Radio Forth Cash for Kids, RS MacDonald, The Cattanach Trust and The Robertson Trust - as well as other individual fundraising & donations. Again, a huge thanks for your support. Thanks again to our accountant Brian Maloney and his team, for his examination and production of our end of year accounts. Our accounts are available with a copy of this Annual Report and I look forward to seeing you all at our Annual General Meeting.

“It is the contributions from ALL our funders that enables Home-Start West Lothian to help to our families each year.”

Tom Mitchell, Treasurer Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020 9


Group Work Report Well it’s that time of year again, and what a year it’s been! We have been busy bees this year and have continued to develop our programme for the families we support. This year we have been lucky enough to deliver our outreach groups to 50 adults and 82 children. We began the year mindfully when we met with Lorraine from Lollipop Therapies, she taught us a few techniques to slow our minds down and ultimately relax. In the following months we engaged in selfdefence, child safety, Fire Safety, First Aid, and Home Energy. We also had such fun at our Bookbug Sessions where we read “My Granny is a Pirate” and made our own Pirate Hats! We also got super messy at our Halloween Themed Messy Play Sessions. We played with paint, shaving foam, water and even spaghetti! December saw the man in the big red suit pay us a visit at our biggest, and best, Christmas Party yet!! 31 adults and 52 children descended on Seafield Community Centre for an afternoon of dancing, games and fun! A huge thank you to Radio Forth 1’s Cash for Kids who funded our Annual Christmas Party. We began 2020 having a much needed catch-up while planning for the year ahead. As always, we asked our families to share with us what topics they would like to talk about at groups, and from this feedback we decided that March would be dedicated to mindfulness and building the framework for improving our mental health. To do this we were joined by Marie-Claire Donnelly who shared some of the tools we can use to create our very own wellbeing toolkit. We worked on recognising thoughts which don’t serve us, the importance of eating a balanced diet, fitness and techniques like meditation and journaling to ensure we have a steady foundation to better our mental health and be the best version of ourselves. We also paired these sessions with online blogs filled with lots of hints and tips for families to tap into and keep their mental health well. Moving forward we have plans to deliver one-off sessions on a Friday morning. These sessions will aim to work with partnership agencies which may not be able to deliver sessions to our regular outreach groups. We are in talks with a variety of agencies focusing on a wide variety of topics; from physical and mental health to messy play with the children. We are excited at the prospect of this work and are looking forward to such times as we can put these plans into action. Emily Hutchison, Group Worker

Group Workers

Lesley Cook

10 Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020

Steph Fry

Emily Hutchison


In-House Group Work Programme 2019-2020 We continue to provide targeted work to a small group through our In-House Programme. This year our in-house programme supported 33 families. The programme is designed to support families in improving their confidence and self-esteem, developing and enhancing their parenting skills while benefitting from health and well-being advice. We have enjoyed breakfast and lunch with Bookbug, music and movement, and delivered 3 blocks of Steps to Success. Our Bookbug sessions were attended by 7 families, including 8 children. Our very much-needed Additional Support Needs (ASN) Group started and offered support for parents who have children with an ASN diagnosis or children who display challenging behaviours (linked to an impending diagnosis). These sessions are being accessed by 7 families to support 10 children. West Lothian Council Outreach Worker for Autism Early Intervention, Marlyn Burns is working closely with Lesley, Family Group Worker, to deliver this service. Parents are invited to ask questions and seek advice through our ASN Group Facebook Page and responses are delivered through the same outlet. The Steps to Success continued. Parents are asked to share their vision, set goals and learn relaxation techniques, while group facilitators encourage journaling and discuss the importance of regular exercise and a good diet in relation to improving our mental health. For parents who engage fully in the programme it is hoped they find these techniques enhance their often chaotic lives and assist in improving mental health. This course is now accredited and recognised by SQA. Candidates will receive a SQFC 3 in Improving Wellbeing Award on completion.

“My kids love coming to groups. They enjoy the routine, they love the staff and feel safe being left while mummy leaves them. They enjoy playing different games and the other children bring there too. I also love that they stay in the crèche so I can get some mummy time with a hot coffee and chat with other mummies.” Supported Family

Lesley Cook, Group Worker Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020 11


Groups Covid- 19 Response It goes without saying that in order to keep our families and staff team safe we made the very difficult decision to cancel our group work plans in early March 2020. During the strange and at times scary period of isolation we have been proud to continue to deliver our groups online. We continue to react to the needs of our families by holding weekly scheduled group chats via Facebook Messenger as well as sharing positive content on our “Home-Start Positive Parents” group page. Since the beginning of lockdown we have delivered over 36 sessions which have been accessed by 23 families while our Positive Parents Group page currently has 29 members. We have been lucky enough to work closely with partner agencies in providing good advice to our families at this difficult time. We have scheduled speakers to chat with the families who can ask our speakers questions. These sessions helped make lockdown that little bit more manageable. We have also been lucky enough to work closely with Laura from Big Hearts, Little Minds; a business which specialises in mindfulness for children. Laura has delivered a block of online classes to 8 families, including 14 children. Marie-Claire Donnelly delivered online yoga classes - parents found the practice relaxing and felt the benefits of getting their bodies moving. In these uncertain times, group workers continue to strive to deliver sessions which our families both enjoy and learn from. Although guidance remains foggy on when we will be safe to return to delivering face-to-face support we aim to keep spirits high and as always cannot thank our lovely families enough for their continued engagement and openness to our very unique group work programme… we can’t wait to see what the next year brings for us. 12 Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020


Referrer’s report I have been a Health Visitor working within the Craigshill area for the past 11 years. Craigshill is an area deemed “deprived” and the families that live within the area are often single parent families with at least two children under the age of 5 years. The single parent of the family is often struggling with their children’s care and behaviours and without support the parent can often end up with Social Work involvement. As a Health Visitor being able to refer to a service that can provide support to parents can be the catalyst to change and prevent Social Work becoming involved. I have referred to Home-Start since I first came into post; the services that can be offered are always welcomed by my families. Establishing a relationship and a level of trust with these families is paramount to providing the much needed support. An initial visit to he family to introduce the worker leads to the early relationship building, the worker is always friendly and non judgemental and this usually alleviates any feeling of anxiety for the parent. The allocated worker will communicate throughout their involvement and will nearly always be able to refer or signpost on the family to local supports when their involvement is coming to an end. I can definitely say that without the services of Home-Start many of my families would have ended up with an allocated Social Worker and most likely have lost their care of the children. As a Health Visitor being able to refer to this much valued resource enables me to know that my families are getting the much needed support and guidance with their parenting.

“I can definitely say that without the services of Home-Start many of families would have ended up with an allocated Social Worker and most likely have lost their care of the children.”

Debbie French, Health Visitor NHS Lothian Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020 13


Family Support Co-ordinators Report The ‘trio’ of coordinators have been working hard to support young families in West Lothian over the last year. Overall, we received and managed 82 referrals, 7 of those being self-referrals from families who were informed about our support from their health visitors or other families who were already engaging with our service. 133 families were supported overall by either a home visiting volunteer befriender for 9 months, fortnightly family support groups, or both, in the time frame, with 51 being carried forward from the previous year and continuing with support. 39 of those families ended completely, on a positive note, following a robust package of support. 46 families were matched with a volunteer befriender or monthly support group for a shorter time than allocated, choosing to withdraw from support earlier for various reasons, i.e. leaving the area, getting a job, going to college, managing better or just deciding that this support was not for them. 9 families are currently receiving a ‘group only’ package which continued when their volunteer support ended. 18 families are currently matched with a volunteer befriender, receiving weekly support. 16 families are on our waiting list for volunteer support and the majority are attending one of our family support groups while they wait. Additional support to families over the year: • 10 Foodbank referrals • 14 School Bank referrals • 16 referrals to the Family Holiday Association • 38 families received a Christmas hamper • 20 families received a food hamper in January • 23 families used the Hive soft play pass • 50 families used the Mill Farm/Almond valley pass • 19 families used the Dynamic Earth pass • 6 used our new pass to Tots spot During the coronavirus crisis we have been continuing to support families remotely via zoom, Facebook and also through providing telephone support. Volunteers that were matched with a family prior to Covid-19 have continued to provide support to their families through telephone support. Furthermore, we have continued to match families with volunteers on our waiting list through the use of Zoom. The Family Support Coordinators have been providing on-going support to families and have supported families to access essentials such as food and medicine. In May 2019 we celebrated and showed our appreciation to our wonderful volunteers at our Annual Volunteer Recognition Ceremony which was held in Pumpherston Golf Club. Event Management Students from West Lothian College contributed to the organisation of this event, approximately 50 HSWL personnel attended (Volunteers, Board Members and Staff) and a great night was had by all. West Lothian College students were also contributing to the planning of this year’s Volunteer Recognition Ceremony which unfortunately has had to be postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak and subsequent lockdown. This event will hopefully take place later this year.

14 Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020


We have completed 3 Volunteer Prep Courses in the last year, the last one being completed via Zoom with 5 volunteers and 2 coordinators (Stacey and Jacqui). We have gained 20 new volunteers from the Prep Courses, May 2019 - 5, September 2019 - 10 and February 2020 - 5. A total of 9 volunteers have completed the Prep Course Accreditation assignment and the 5 most recent volunteers are currently working on it. Internal Verification from West Lothian College is currently on hold due to the COVID-19 situation. We currently have a total of 53 volunteers with a view to increasing this number through ongoing Volunteer Prep Courses. Recruitment is on track with 4 potential volunteers already interviewed and a further 2 with interview times to be confirmed.

Volunteer Prep Course Due to Covid-19 restrictions, there was a delay in the April Prep Course starting. As there appeared to be no end in sight regarding lockdown, following discussion with the 6 potential volunteers, it was decided to run the Prep Course wholly as a virtual Zoom group. This has definitely been a case of trial and error, however everyone involved was up for the challenge. We had to overcome some challenges to finish the course and we were delighted that all five volunteers graduated - remotely. We couldn’t have our usual end of course feast but we’ll be having that at a later date. We don’t stand still for Prep Course and we are always recruiting and getting ready for the next one. This is a learning curve for everyone, however when we can finally get back out there supporting our families face to face - we’ll be ready! We would like to wish our families and volunteers all the best for the future year.

Family Support Co-ordinators

Stacey Boyle

Lisa Stark

Jacqui Elliott

Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020 15


Our Impact 2019-20

133 families supported including 275 children

1040 hours of volunteer support delivered

82 new referrals

185 children under age 5 supported

With my Home-Start volunteer’s support, my child:

100%

100%

100%

95%

95% 86%

is more confident

was able to try new activities

has improved social skills

is more motivated to learn and try new activities

copes better now

is more robust

100%

of parents

said they play more with their child now Data in this section is from the 2019 Family Evaluation 16

Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020


50 Adults and 82 children attended our Outreach groups, with 33 families also attending our In-house groups 493 volunteer visits were carried out

3 prep courses ran, training

20 new volunteers, with 14 new accreditations completed

Volunteer Recognition Ceremony had

50 attendees

39 families had a positive ending to their support 15 families including 21 children benefitted from Itison vouchers Xmas party was attended by 31 Adults and 52 children Our activity passes were used

98 times

Xmas Hamper containing food, toiletries,

38 families received an sanitary products and treats 20 families received a

January Food Hamper

14 families provided with short-breaks through the Family Holiday Association

10 families referred to food banks

20 families, including 36 children, attended our summer outing

14 School Bank referrals to help with

new school uniforms Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020 17


Our Impact: parent’s case-study I have quite bad depression and anxiety which can stop me from wanting to do things, so when S was born, I wanted to try go to groups and things but I was too scared. My health visitor referred me to Home-Start and at first I was really anxious about coming to the groups. But the first one I went to on a Tuesday made me feel so welcome and it felt like I had known them forever. It gives me a chance to have some adult time and maybe sometimes get things off my chest. It also gives S a chance to play with other children older, younger and the same age, and the difference in her is unbelievable. We’ve only been with Home-Start about 3 months now but she loves coming to see her little friends and play. We cover lots of different things in the groups. Sometimes it’s parents giving each other advice on how they do things. Sometimes we have people from different professions to give us advice or support on things we’re struggling with, or even just a chat. It really helps me to learn about stuff I can be doing with S, to help her learn, and to try new things. Right now I’m doing a 6 week group called Steps to Success where we are learning about how to selfcare and still look after ourselves and make times for ourselves, even if that’s just 5 minutes. We’ve been working on things like writing down 5 positive things that happen to you everyday even if they are just things like ‘I got out of bed.’ But it’s things like this that really, really help because I personally feel like, as much as I have grown with S and love being her mummy, I kind of lost myself a bit. Steps to Success helps you remember that you’re not just a mum - you’re still a human being !! The girls at Home-Start are amazing, they’re so supportive with everything!! I love that you can be completely honest without feeling judged. They’ll tell you if they think it’s wrong but they don’t judge. They’ll sit down with you and help you find other ways of coping or even just ways of helping you selfcare because we all know that can be hard with little ones. I honestly don’t know what I would do without my volunteer anymore either. She’s absolutely amazing. It might only be a couple hours once a week but they couple hours makes a massive difference. She’s helped me have confidence to do new things and have fun while doing it instead of feeling anxious. Home-Start is one of the best family support groups out there. They show how much they care and they make us feel like part of a big amazing family.

Supported Family in West Lothian 18

Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020


Our Impact: in the voices of our supported parents “ I feel confident and happy. Now there’s no stopping me!” “I’m so close to loving myself again. I honestly can’t thank Home-Start enough, they helped me get my life back.”

“It’s hard to accept you need support; it’s hard to admit that you’re not doing so great, but these guys don’t make you feel guilty or bad about it.”

“Best thing to have happened to us as a family. We don’t have a volunteer but just being part of a wider family, being made to feel important and loved.”

“My baby copes better with other children now and isn’t as shy anymore. She’ll play with other children and interact without me being there.”

“Kids get more chance to get socialise with other kids and my child is now more interacting and making friends. It’s brilliant to see the change.” Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020 19


Home-Visiting Befrienders Volunteer Gallery

Delyth MacDonald

Susan Gordon

Nicky Davidson

Angela Cameron

Nigel Smith

Lesley Morrison

Sharon McCabe

Jean Wearing

Moira Emerson

Manal Musa

Lindsay Smith

Angela Hogg / Amanda Stables

Helen-Jane Shearer

Grace Kozakiewicz

We would also like to thank our camera-shy volunteers:

Sharon Inglis Anne Allen Pamela Ferguson Jacqui Couper Gwen Rigg Susan Cunningham Louise Grant Cleo Cane

Carol-Ann Moffatt Lyndsay Frye Anne-Marie McGuckin Angela Northam Margaret Salkeld Sacha Graham Shirley Sneddon Carol Blair

20 Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020

Vidya Aluru Laura Bryce Rabia Mahmood


Joyce McPhee

Lesley Aitken

Valerie Silver

Sue Lawrenson

Margaret Carson

Claire Kerr

Pamela Telfer

Diane Somerville

Shannon Watkin

As a volunteer I have had to adapt to a different way of supporting a family. I was matched with my 29th family in July. This match was done via Zoom, which I was a bit unsure about how that would work, but it went well and I now do my weekly support via a pre arranged phone call to mum which is also working well. The staff at HSWL have worked hard to keep the volunteer support going during Covid, which means volunteers can still continue to support their families, albeit in a different way, but still allowing us to carry out our role. Let us hope for a much more ‘normal’ way of supporting families in the coming year. Diane Somerville, Home Visiting Volunteer, Trustee and Vice Chair Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020 21


Board Gallery

Ann-Marie McAllan

Diane Somerville, Vice-Chair

Scott Coutts

Tom Mitchell, Treasurer

Mohammed Sabur

Louise Taylor, Chair

Veronica Smith

Stella Leitch

Margaret Schonberger

Liz Clow

Stacey Boyle Family Support Co-ordinator

Lisa Stark, Family Support Co-ordinator

Jacqui Elliott, Family Support Co-ordinator

Staff Gallery

Stuart Barrie, Manager

Emily Hutchison, Group Worker

Steph Fry, Group Worker

Kim Harris, Senior Administrator

22 Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020

Lesley Cook, Group Worker


Marketing Report I joined the Board of Trustees of Home-Start West Lothian in the Spring of 2019 after hearing about all they do to support local families – the main factor being that it is a local charity which helps people in my community, making West Lothian a better place to live and have a family. Part of my role, in addition to supporting the overall strategic direction of the charity, is to provide marketing advice and direction for the charity, using my experience and knowledge from working in a marketing role at West Lothian College. Our four 4 main marketing objectives are: 1 – Attracting enough volunteers to meet the demand for families 2 – Raising awareness within the community so that families who need us know we are here to support them 3 – Raising awareness and attracting potential funders to ensure that the charity has enough money to continue operating and providing a service in the local community 4 – Highlight the excellent service provided by the charity to influencers, such as local Councillors and MSPs To support these objectives I work with key colleagues at Home-Start West Lothian to provide direction and advice for advertising, branding, events and communications. This includes helping with identifying the target markets and how we reach them, what we should write about to raise awareness and engagement, setting up digital adverts, providing guidance on the brand and how this should be communicated, supporting events and setting the marketing strategy for the charity. We recently launched a new digital campaign to attract more volunteers in to our next training session. Working with staff at the charity we identified and analysed the analytics on what posts work best, who we should target, what content we should use and when is the best time to run the campaign to increase awareness, engagement and sign ups. Although the last few months have been tough for everyone, the staff and volunteers at Home-Start West Lothian have been outstanding. I am amazed at how well they have adapted and continued to provide a critical service to all those that need it; using online technologies and changing the way they work to ensure that no family is left without support. Home-Start West Lothian continues to grow, going from strength to strength, supporting more families and attracting an increasing number of volunteers each year. I am privileged to be on the Board for the charity, witnessing the great work undertaken by all staff and volunteers on a daily basis, and I’d like to personally thank them all for their efforts in ensuring that we are providing the best possible service, being there for parents and families when they need us most.

Scott Coutts - Trustee Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020 23


Funders and donors We couldn’t carry out our work without the generous support of our funders and donors. Our thanks for 2019/2020 to:

Thanks to Helen-Jane Shearer for the Annual Report design

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Home-Start West Lothian Annual Report 2020  

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