"It was amazing. Right from the beginning I got on like a house on fire with mum, dad and all the children," says Gail, a single parent with two teenage children of her own.

With ten years' work as a playgroup supervisor behind her she decided that she wanted to focus her skills and life experience on helping a family that was struggling to cope.

She visits Sue and her children once a week. Sometimes she's there just to listen and other times she helps out with more practical issues such as getting the family to hospital appointments. With five children in the family this is otherwise almost impossble for the family.

Sue says:

Gail is like a tonic to me. She brightens up the whole house and all the children think the world of her. I can talk about anything with her and know it's confidential.

When her own children are grown up, Gail wants to work in either social work or care work. So being a Home-Start volunteer is a step towards this goal. She says:

Home-Start training is excellent and I have already gained three college credits wih CERTA and hope to gain some more through Home-Start's ongoing training.

Inspired? See if you can volunteer locally.

Please support Home-Start so that we can continue to train more volunteers like Gail. Find out how you can help us.

Some of our volunteers prefer not to be photographed. So this story is illustrated by models.