Edinburgh’s CrossReach parenting service needs charitable builders for play area


CrossReach perinatal service is looking for good samaritans with a construction and landscaping background to help them to create an outdoor space for the families that use their services.

CrossReach provides a variety of “free, accessible counselling service with professionally trained perinatal counsellors and therapists for those expecting a child and those living with a child under the age of two.”

Dawn McMechan, the creche manager, has said that the outdoor area of the business is in need of a renovation if it is to be suitable for children to be able to play outdoors.

As a result, they are asking for help from builders and landscapers in creating, designing and implementing their vision for the courtyard space.

Dawn said: “We have a very small enclosed courtyard space that comes off the crèche. Currently, it is unsuitable for babies and toddlers to use, however we would absolutely love to create a space that is safe and inviting for babies and infants.

“A play space designed especially for our babies that will allow for exploration and curiosity would be wonderful and of huge benefit to the babies and toddlers.

“We really need professional help to design and create the space. Ideally we would love some natural resources, a shelter, investigation and messy play experiences and somewhere the babies can safely develop their physical and social abilities.

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“We are looking for a creative professional who may have experience/ability in developing play spaces, and who is able to plan and design a safe space.

“We would need the help of builders and landscapers. Once we are ready we would love to fill it with some natural resources, sensory toys and apparatus.

“Any help with building work, wood and flooring donations, plants and planters, outdoor play resources and furniture would be so greatly appreciated.

“Anything really to make the space an exciting environment for our families and babies to enjoy.”

CrossReach says that a baby is a major part of a family’s life, and becoming a parent can be particularly challenging.

Staff at CrossReach.
Staff at CrossReach.

As a result they offer perinatal counselling services and provide a variety of free, accessible counselling services with professionally trained perinatal counsellors and therapists.

The creche at Simpson House works with the perinatal counselling service to provide essential care for babies while their parents receive counselling.

The crèche is registered with the Care Inspectorate, and so works to a high standard of care.

They also provide several free groups offering support to the families within the service.

These supports include Infant Massage and Stay and Play, this is where they can focus on strengthening relationships and the mental health and wellbeing of the whole family.

Outdoor area in question.
Outdoor area in question.

Dawn added: “The service we provide is exceptional, it is free, and accessible to anyone. We recognise the family as a whole and provide support for fathers as well as the mothers and babies.

“We recognise the importance of having positive and secure relationships from an early age. Our crèche promotes bonding and nurture working alongside the support the parents receive within their counselling experiences.

“And due to the pandemic it has become increasingly stressful for babies and parents to separate from each other.

“A nurturing and welcoming outdoor space would provide important play experiences for babies and toddlers and give them an opportunity to experience being with their peers.

“For parents it would provide peace of mind whilst they receive counselling. We have a limited amount of funds for this project but we are sure with the right support we can come together to create something wonderful!”

Families from across Edinburgh are able to refer to the service or can be referred through a medical professional or health visitor.

They are also able to offer online counselling services facilitated by therapists with online counselling training.

However they warn that this has always been a busy service and with the additional strains on new parents during the pandemic their service is increasingly in demand.

You can visit CrossReach website here.


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