Forget-Me-Notts is a project whose purpose is to empower local people and local businesses to support their social care system in meeting the practical emergency needs of the most vulnerable children in their local community, letting each child ‘know’ they are not-forgotten
We are delighted to be partnering with Operation Orphan to have opened their first Forget-Me-Notts hub outside the East Midlands. Lancashire County Council identified the Fylde Coast as being the most under resourced area for asset based support due to its broad socio-economic spread. There was no service like this in the area. Having identified this gap in the care structure, the team have been completing referrals since July 2020.
This project is delivered across two strands:
Strand 1 - Referrals
Through a referral process we deliver targeted, practical help to ‘at risk’ children across the Fylde Coast, in many cases helping to prevent children from being taken into care.
How does it work?
Once the child’s needs are assessed, support agencies such as Social Services submit a referral to our Central Co-ordination Team with an overview of the family’s situation and a list of things that would significantly improve the quality of the children’s environment. These practical items could be anything from household furniture to bedding. These things are basic necessities in any home but are not so easily obtainable for families dealing with unemployment, homelessness or escaping domestic violence where cost becomes a big issue.
Once we know what is needed we share the information with as many people as possible through our Facebook group. The local community can then either offer second hand items, make cash donations or purchase directly from the Operation Orphan on-line shop. It can really inspire people when they are able to see exactly what their donation is helping with. Although we can’t ever show pictures of the children we are providing for, the feedback we receive confirms that this is having a huge impact and empowering social workers to make a difference.
Strand 2 - Easter & Christmas Gifts
At Christmas and Easter we give chocolate gifts to children who are in care or known to the care system locally.
For many of these children this will be the only gift they receive. Social workers tell us that although this may seem a small gesture, to the children it means a lot; it shows them they are not forgotten.
We’ve been astounded by how many people have donated chocolate eggs and selection boxes for us to distribute. If you want to get involved in this then please get in touch and we will let you know more detail.
If you'd like to support this project in anyway, please get in touch with us!