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It has never been so important to be there for our children and their families

  • By Abi Hart
  • 11th February 2021

I am Becky, the Deputy Manager of Jimbo’s community nursery which is based in the Vinery Centre. On a day to day basis I support the nursery manager with the general running of the nursery and also oversee our Preschool Playroom.

In Jimbo’s we can take children from aged 6 months up until they leave us to go to school. We also run an after school club and holiday club for primary school aged children. We are a mainstream setting; however we provide care for vulnerable children and a high number of children with additional needs. It is a great honour to be part of such an inclusive setting.

Whilst in nursery, the children explore and experience lots of planned activities which help their development, this can range from maths, reading or simply communicating with their friends. We also work with outside agencies to support children the best we possibly can, including the inclusion team and speech and language to name just a few.

I have worked in childcare for around 10 years now and I absolutely love seeing how much of a difference nursery makes to the children’s development and confidence at such an important time of their lives.. Whether it is seeing them take their first steps in the baby room or watching them grow into confident children when they leave us to go to “big school”. It is absolutely magical.

My support doesn’t just stop with the children, I support their families too. As we are in a deprived area, a number of our families can have daily struggles, especially during recent times as we go through the pandemic, it has never been so important to be there for our children and their families.

It has been really sad to see how the pandemic has affected our families. People have lost their jobs and some have sadly lost loved ones. We receive weekly food to distribute to our parents and at Christmas all of our families got a lovely big hamper which had lots of food for them to enjoy over the Christmas period. Just seeing the reactions’ on our parent’s faces when we gave them the food parcels was priceless! One family said “This hamper will help feed my children in the run up to Christmas. This is a huge help for us as we are a low income family.” Another said “It was indeed a great surprise to receive such a perfect gift from the school. This demonstrates the true love and care they receive from school, even when on a break. We are grateful”

It was a brilliant feeling knowing our children and families had foods in their cupboards. Through the pandemic we regularly contact and update parents, sending work packs home to help occupy children or sometime they might just need another adult to talk to for 10 minutes. Little things like this can make a huge difference.      

I started working in childcare as an apprentice when I left high school and went on to complete my level 2 and 3 in Children’s Care and Development. I then worked as a nursery nurse in a number of settings, before joining Leeds Mencap in 2016 in my first managerial role, which was a proud moment for me.  I have worked in a number of nurseries, but nothing comes close to what we do in Jimbo’s to support our children and their families. It’s lovely to hear the feedback from parents and the difference we are making. I am so proud to tell people that I work at Jimbo’s Community Nursery and Leeds Mencap.

One parent of a child with additional needs who I helped to secure a school place in a specialist provision said “Thank you so much Becky for all your help and support I really don’t know what I would have done without you and where my child would be without you.” 

That is the reason why I come to work every day to make a difference to these children.

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