Early Years Scotland has received a National Lottery award from the National Lottery Community Fund to continue and expand its highly successful work supporting children under five years of age affected by the imprisonment of a parent.
The charity runs a range of services across six Scottish prisons in partnership with the Scottish Prison Service (SPS), aimed at strengthening parent-child attachment and family relationships.
The services include shared play and learning sessions, baby massage sessions, and programmes where prisoners with children learn about topics such as their child’s early brain development, health and wellbeing, safety at home, and the importance of play.
From initially involving solely fathers, Early Years Scotland’s prison services now include both male and female prisoners.
Welcoming the award, Early Years Scotland Chief Executive, Jean Carwood-Edwards, said:
“We are absolutely thrilled that the National Lottery Community Fund has made this award. It will enable Early Years Scotland to continue the work we have being doing and allow us to develop the new services we have planned.
“Having a parent in prison can have a hugely adverse impact on very young children, and can feed the generational cycle of offending whereby those children themselves end up in prison in the future.
“Services like ours support prisoners, their children and partners during a most difficult time in their lives. In doing so, we can help towards a reduction in prisoners reoffending and, crucially, contribute towards breaking that generational cycle.”
The National Lottery Community Fund Scotland Chair, Maureen McGinn, said:
“I am delighted that Early Years Scotland has been successful in securing a grant from the National Lottery Community Fund. The award will make a big difference where it is needed most and I wish Early Years Scotland every success as it goes on to develop and expand its project for the benefit of their local community.”
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