We are the community of around 1500 families who belong to the Archway Early Years Centre in London N19. It’s a large SureStart centre that is governed by Islington Borough Council and located on Vorley Road in the centre of Archway, London, N19.
This site is run by the volunteer parents and carers who use and love the centre, who entrust their children’s well-being (as well as their own, e.g. during pregnancy and breastfeeding) to the brilliant staff there, and who wish to support the centre to be the best that it can be to serve the needs of the families of Archway.
Claudine Fry, parent rep, mum to two daughters in the nursery and play scheme, loves Archway Children’s Centre and her feelings are typical:
I have been a regular visitor to the centre since my eldest daughter was days old, back in 2011. The role the centre has played in our life as a family is hard to explain and I simply cannot imagine how we would have coped without it. The centre has been an invaluable source of strength and advice, it has provided our daughters with incredible early years care and education, and we have made lifelong friends there. I hope we can help ensure its continued success, and the safety and health of children using the centre.
The nursery provides services to 600 families with children under 5 within its official catchment. However in addition to offering childcare (that is recognised across London as best-in-class) from 8.00am-5.00pm daily, it serves many more families through a wide range of outreach services including:
- All local ante-natal services
- All local post-natal services
- Child health clinics
- Speech and Language Support
- Family Support
- Classes and Courses (Stay and Play, Baby Massage, Music etc.)
Factoring these in, approximately 1500 parents and carers use the centre, including pregnant women and very young babies.
Former head Nasso Christou received an OBE for making the facilities what they are today – a hub of life for young families in Archway. Her good work is continued by Mita Pandya who has also been at the nursery for many years and is Acting Head since Nasso’s retirement last year.
There have always been parent forums at the children’s centre but they have largely been informal. In 2016, with construction work in Archway threatening the health and safety of our children, we were spurred into better organising ourselves to speak on behalf of the centre and communicate more effectively to all users on issues affecting it.
The centre has a special place in all our hearts because the work it does is extraordinary. We are passionate about protecting it, and ensuring the health and safety of our children and future users of the centre. We also wish to ensure we can organise social events and share information to make the most of being part of the AEYC community.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to get involved or learn more.