STRIVE THIRD SECTOR DELEGATE ELECTION 2019-2021 | Katy Pollock, Homestart East Lothian

My name is Katy Pollock and I am the manager of Home-Start East Lothian. I have worked for Home-Start East Lothian for 6 years now, moving up to Scotland with my family. Previously I have worked in Early Years both within the voluntary and statutory sector. My roles ranged from private childcare, nursery manager and Early Years consultant for the local authority.

My time at Home-Start East Lothian has evolved with a service adapting to the changing needs of the families we support here within the local community. We deliver training to our volunteers before matching them with a family for 2/3 hrs weekly support. Families accept support for a variety of reasons which can include isolation, mental health concerns, and multiple births to name a few. We are able to offer our service across all families as we all know parenthood is the most challenging job we will be given. As a staff team we endeavour to hold a knowledge of local groups we can signpost families to along with our wonderful team of volunteers who bring a huge breath of knowledge to the charity.

As my role as manager I also attend meetings both locally and nationally to ensure families are being supported in the most effective way. Home-Start East Lothian is part of a network of Home-starts across Scotland and the UK. This allows us to access more national agendas as a group or individual charities.

I am applying to be the 3rd sector representative for the Children’s Strategic Partnership as I feel passionately the 3rd Sector plays a very important role in the landscape of services here in East Lothian. We need to ensure our voice is not only heard but used to shape services available going forward. We are entering a time where funding is becoming increasingly stretched and we all need to be working smartly, in partnership and focused on the needs of a changing community. We all run busy services and to ensure we can really meet the needs of our services users effectively and efficiently requires joined up thinking and working.