Minister Harris TD and the Ombudsman for Children launch SPECS, a new early intervention and prevention service for families in the Greater Bray Area.
A new service to help children reach their full potential in the Greater Bray Area was launched on Monday November 30th, 2015 by the Minister of State, Simon Harris TD, and the Ombudsman for Children, Dr. Niall Muldoon.
SPECS (Supporting Parents and Early Childcare Services) is a prevention and early intervention initiative that works with parents, early years services, schools and other agencies to improve outcomes for children from pregnancy through to school age. The service is free-of-charge and is supported by a Consortium of over twenty community-based and statutory agencies with Bray Area Partnership as the lead agency.
The SPECS team of mentors and early years specialists work with families and practitioners from pregnancy right through to school age. Depending on the age of a child, SPECS provides a number of different supports. The programmes are designed to help make family life easier and to learn practical ways of dealing with conflict, stress or helping children develop and learn.
Speaking at the launch, Minister Harris TD said, “I am delighted to launch this vital initiative for families in the Bray area. With funding from the Government’s Area Based Childhood (ABC) programme, the Department of Children and Youth Affairs and The Atlantic Philanthropies, SPECS is able to support the implementation of a range of evidence-based programmes that will improve behavioural, social and emotional outcomes for local children.”
In his key-note speech on the importance of early intervention and prevention, the Ombudsman for Children, Dr. Niall Muldoon, stated that “the most formative period of a child’s life is the earliest months and years. A child’s development from the pre-natal period to the age of 4 is a reliable indicator for the child’s later outcomes. Prevention and early intervention programmes can play a major role in supporting parents who are unable to access traditional parenting supports. Thanks to the SPECS programmes, parents will avail of that help and enable their children to achieve their full potential.”
Since its inception this year, SPECS has worked with numerous families in the Bray area. Services include one-to-one mentoring facilities for parents; parenting and family-centred programmes; and assistance for local Early Years Services.
To learn more about the SPECS programmes, drop into SPECS at Unit 1, Brí Chualann Court, Adelaide Rd, Bray or phone (01) 211 6481. More information is also at on Facebook, under ‘SPECS Bray’.