Grant holder
Home Start
Project status

A project which developed community volunteer family and child support based on Froebelian principles.

Project Summary

Home-Start works with families in communities right across the UK, they run a local community network of trained volunteers and expert support helping families with young children.

The Imagine, Discover, Explore, Adventures Project (IDEAs) was piloted in four schemes and five sites:

​Home Start Leicester, Melton and Rutland (MEL)​

Home Start Mid/West Suffolk-Stowmarket and Worlingworth (MSF)​

Home Start Sutton (SUT)​

Home start Wirral (WIR)

Home Start's IDEAs project was successful in developing a new model of volunteer based family and child support based on Froebelian principles​:

  • The role of play and creativity as central integrating elements in development and learning is embedded throughout every group session. ​
  • The uniqueness of every child's capacity and potential is central to both the training and group work sessions. ​
  • Volunteers are aware of the holistic nature of the development of every child through the undertaking of detailed observations of play.​
  • The integrity of childhood in its own right is a key element of the training of volunteers ​
  • Play sessions focus on the outdoor environment in line with the Froebelian principle of the relationship of every child to family, community and to nature, culture and society.​
  • The right of children to protection from harm or abuse and to the promotion of their overall well-being is core to all Home-Start UK work​

Project outcomes

  • ​The data for this project has been gathered from all the families that have been involved with IDEAs​.
  • The analysis of the data demonstrates that after attending four play sessions there has been a small increase in confidence for parents managing their children's behaviour and more significantly, confidence around being involved in their children's learning and development​.
  • There is also evidence to indicate that parents have not needed to access as many additional services. This could be due to the support that they are receiving within the group setting​.

Research documents

Final Home-Start IDEAS Project Report