Peter Grigg, Home-Start UK CEO has chaired a round table meeting with the Duchess of Cambridge and six other charities to emphasise the importance of peer-to-peer support for parents on Tuesday 22 September.

The Duchess of Cambridge followed up with a meeting in a London park with two mums supported by Home-Start Wandsworth who shared their experiences of how Home-Start volunteers helped them overcome the challenges they faced during lockdown.

The Duchess of Cambridge learnt of the 13,500 home-visiting volunteers working across 187 local Home-Starts in the UK who support over 27,000 families and 56,000 children each year. The discussions focused on the experiences of providing this support during lockdown and how charities are preparing to reignite peer support activities.

Peter Grigg, said;

“We are delighted that the Duchess of Cambridge took time to recognise the vital work of Home-Start volunteers and those shining beacons selflessly supporting families before, during, and after this pandemic. The rich variety of informal and formal help in so many communities builds the confidence of parents facing challenges and helps avert families from crisis.”

“Home-Start services, like many other local charities, are keen to resume as quickly as is safe to do so. The current situation created real challenges for small charities and those working with volunteers, but it is essential that parents and children get the support that they need.”

Home-Start UK, alongside charities Best Beginnings and the Parent-Infant Foundation, Home-Start UK recently released the Babies in Lockdown report ( which highlighted the impact the pandemic has had on families.

One quarter (25%) of parents reported concern about their relationship with their baby, and one third (35%) of these would like to get help with this. Of the 1,403 respondents with a baby under two months old 79.8% said they’d had not had face-to-face contact with a health visitor.