The difference you make

Children 1st Director of Fundraising & Business Development, Gary Kernahan, writes about how your support has helped families throughout lockdown, and how you can help us do more. 

Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, we have been determined to be there for children and families.

While many people have been in lockdown at home, Children 1st staff have been delivering food parcels and essential supplies to families, having reassuring conversations on the doorstep, interacting with the children we normally see through video calls and listening to parents concerns and providing advice on the phone.

My colleagues have had to be creative and innovative to find ways to provide the support they would normally give in person. They’ve been trying all kinds of things – like building their own den out of blankets while a child does the same on the other end of a video call.

Lockdown has been tough. I know personally that some days have been good but others have been a struggle. My young children have missed going to school and being able to play with their friends. I hope that everyone reading this knows that it is OK to find it hard. On those bad days or at times when you are feeling down or overwhelmed, we want you to know that help is there.

I have been so impressed by the efforts of so many to keep children safe and by the generosity we’ve seen during these difficult and worrying times. Hundreds of people have donated to help protect children from trauma and harm and prevent it happening. Thanks to your support Children 1st has been there.

Now we need your support to help children and families repair and recover.

Now as the lockdown restrictions are beginning to relax, the toll this pandemic is having on children is becoming clearer. Reported levels of domestic abuse are increasing. Hundreds of thousands of families face falling into poverty. The impact of the closure of schools threatens to widen the educational attainment gap for disadvantaged children even further.

As we emerge from this crisis, more children and families across Scotland will need our help. There will not be one single solution - every family has been affected in a different way and creative solutions will be required.

To help children and families repair we hope to:

All three of these ways we help families put them back in control of their lives, something that lockdown took away. In our recent Q&A our staff talked about the huge challenges families are facing and how, with your help, they can be overcome. 

But the pandemic has reduced our normal sources of income. That’s why we need you to stand with us in these uncertain times and help keep children and families safe.

You can watch the full Q&A and make a donation on our YouTube channel.

Please donate if you can and help children and families recover from the impact of this terrible coronavirus.