|Homestart Chorley & South Ribble|
Home-Start Chorley & South Ribble
Dorothy works for Home-Start Chorley and South Ribble as a Family Support Group Co-ordinator. She is responsible for developing and managing four Family Groups which focus on providing a stimulating, enriching and supportive Early Learning/ Family Learning environment for parents and children with over 100 families attending each week.
Dorothy says she enrolled on EYPS because “I believed that it would help me improve and develop my practice, and help me to provide a high quality early years experience for children attending our Groups”. She goes on “I am passionate about Early Years, and I wanted to build on the work we had already done and to further inspire colleagues and Group Workers to build a strong team and through our concerted efforts to create a high quality Early Years /Family Support environment”.
Dorothy enjoyed the EYPS experience and says “the course was so much better than I expected, the pace of the course was excellent, there was so much material to cover but each tutor brought something different, interesting and stimulating to the sessions. Everything was fully explained with comprehensive backup materials”. Dorothy adds “The course helped me enormously, as it encouraged me to read, research and to reflect on my practice”.
Dorothy found the action learning sessions really useful and she comments “they were informative, interesting and stimulating and provided valuable opportunities for discussion” Dorothy goes on “I enjoyed the group work sessions too as these provided opportunities to share experiences and to get to know fellow students”.
When asked if the knowledge she gained from the course has been useful in her workplace Dorothy replies “Oh yes it has enabled us to form stronger partnerships with other agencies, for example local Children’s Centres have approached me and asked if I would share my expertise with them. This has raised our profile in the local Early Years Community, thus illustrating that we may be the ‘Voluntary Sector’ but we too are professionals in this field.
It will also help us when we are approaching funders as it enables our organisation to show that we have the skills to deliver a service which is providing better outcomes for children”.
On a personal note Dorothy says “I am absolutely thrilled to have gained the Early Years Professional Status. I feel that I have achieved something worthwhile as a result of all the work that I have put in and it has made a tremendous difference to me, both professionally and at a personal level. I have developed in the sense that I feel that all the experience and skills that I have gathered over the years have been consolidated and in taking time to reflect on my leadership qualities and describing the processes involved in motivating staff, I feel an increased confidence in my role”. she adds “My skills as a leader and as a forward planning, and reflective practitioner have also been further developed as a result of my period of study with this course.
I came to the EYPS with a wealth of knowledge and experience of working and managing in Early Years, but the course has enabled me to pull all this together and I am now confident that I can move forward positively, embracing the EYFS, and Every Child Matters, supporting and enhancing children’s learning, and motivating my team so that we can provide high quality experiences for the families we work with”.
To sum up Dorothy says “I found all the staff to be helpful, approachable and caring. The personal tutor system is great as it provides a lifeline particularly when you are at the beginning of the tasks, and feeling unsure it was good to know that the support was always there if I needed it. I would certainly recommend studying with CETAD to others as I believe it provides a wonderful opportunity to Early Years Practitioners to enhance practice and a chance to consolidate your skills, to study current Early Years issues and to move on with renewed confidence”.
Commenting on behalf of Homestart, their Scheme Manager says:
“Home-Start is delighted that Dorothy has achieved the EYPS. During her time with Home-Start Dorothy has transformed our group work into a model that is respected not only by other agencies locally but also by other Home-Start schemes nationally. The Home-Start Chorley & South Ribble groups offer a unique service to vulnerable families. Working with both parents and children together can offer many challenges but we believe that the model and framework we are currently using enables us to meet these challenges and produce better outcomes both for children and their parents. Dorothy has been instrumental in enabling us to deliver the best possible service we can offer and to continue developing this service for the ultimate benefit and welfare of children”.