Home-Start Ballymena to close before Christmas

Ald Tommy Nicholl.
Ald Tommy Nicholl.

Trustees at Home-Start Ballymena have announced that the service will close on December 23 after a period of 14 years.

Alderman Tommy Nicholl, the Chair of Trustees said the closure decision had been made ‘with great regret’.

The long serving councillor added: “Over the past 14 years Home-Start Ballymena South has provided a unique service for families - recruiting and training volunteers to support parents with young children at home.

“Sadly we are unable to ensure our financial viability any longer and cannot carry on with our work.”

Alderman Nicholl said supported families had been notified.

“We have worked closely with Ballymena Sure Start colleagues to ensure they can continue to help those families who require ongoing support,” he said.

And he paid tribute to all who had played their part in the organisation at all levels.

“During the last 14 years we have worked with hundreds of struggling families with young children, none of which would have been possible without the dedication and hard work of a group of wonderful home-visiting volunteers and trustees. I thank all of them for their commitment.

“I thank our Action for Children N.I colleagues at Ballymena Sure Start for our long-standing and successful partnership. Finally, thank-you to all of those who have supported our work in any way over the past 14 years.

“Home-Start is a wonderful service, and the work done by volunteers is life-changing for families.”

Families seeking support in Ballymena should contact Ballymena Sure Start on 028 256 42883 or 028 256 43555.

Home-Start has supported families in Northern Ireland since 1983. The charity works in 20 communities across Northern Ireland.

Home-Start is a national charity that supports parents and families in times of difficulty. Home-Start supports more than 32,000 families a year from across the UK.

Volunteers visit the family’s home for a couple of hours every week, tailoring their support to the needs of the parents and children.