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Bear faced fun is no picnic for Wade!

A TEDDY bears picnic held by Sure Start Widnes proved to be a roaring success!

A TEDDY bears picnic held by Sure Start Widnes proved to be a roaring success!

As part of Sure Start's summer fun days, the children brought along their favourite Teddies to an afternoon of face painting, mask making, fun and games and a children's entertainer, with information and advice on the scheme for parents.

Other fun days planned include a Pirates day at St Michael s Parish Centre, St Michael's Road from 12.30pm-3pm today.

A pirate will be at the centre and there will be songs and games, patch making and a treasure hunt.

Stewards Avenue fun day will be at the Auto Quest Stadium 10am-4pm on Sunday,August 26, where Sure Start will be joining the residents association by providing a bouncy castle and a children s entertainer.

At Hough Green Park on Mayfield Avenue, 12.30-3pm on Wednesday, August 29, there will be a circus day and barbecue.

Children can dress up like clowns, make animal masks, watch the Pop-up Polly show and join in the circus parade.

A free healthy eating barbecue will also be open to those who have a Sure Start number. If the weather is bad the event will be held indoors at Oakfield Infants school.

Information and advice is available at the fun days for parents and families with young children.

All the events are free of charge and although the focus for the day is for children up to four years old, older brothers and sisters are also welcome.

Sure Start provides a range of services for new parents and families with young children in the Ditton, Hough Green and Avenues areas of Widnes.

Support begins at pregnancy, with the Get Ready programme, helping to prepare mums for birth and offering practical and emotional support and advice.

Once a baby has been born the Sure Start home visiting team, comprised of midwives, health visitors and nursery nurses, can visit the new mum in her home and give advice on issues like breast feeding.

The food and health team is on hand to solve any problems with food, like cooking skills, budgeting, weaning foods and shopping.

Sure Start nursery nurses offer extra support, giving advice on weaning, sleep, toilet training, temper tantrums and play opportunities, and they also offer baby massage classes, which is proven to make both baby and mum feel great!

Ditton Community Centre holds the Sure Start Creche and is about to provide a toy library service, where toys can be loaned out for a week.

The toy library will be starting as a small pilot project for children aged between one and two, but if it is a success the service will be extended to cater for children up to four years old.

Parents will also be offered Lifelong Learning classes, in subjects from English and maths, giving parents the opportunity to help their children with their homework or to be able to read them stories, to art and beauty therapy.

Taster sessions will be running throughout the summer.

The scheme also runs programmes for families with children with special educational needs and for families with emotional needs like stress or depression.

For more information and how to join and receive a personal Sure Start number, call 0151 420 5473 or 0151 422 9246 and ask for a registration and membership form.


David Holmes
Chief News Reporter
David Norbury
Mike Fuller
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