Our names are Nikki Hayter and Chris Clayton and we are Group Leaders for The Avenue Church Toddler Group. We are fortunate to have a great team of helpers for the group, most of whom we hope you will get to know.
This welcome pack is designed to give you an overview of the group and how it is run, but, please introduce yourself to any of the helpers who would love to have a chat and answer any other questions you may have.
History of the Group
The group was originally started over 25 years ago by mums from this church (some of whom still help out today) who wanted to provide a safe place for children and their carers to spend time together enjoying each others company and giving their children an opportunity to socialise.
Whilst many things may have changed in 25 years, our core aims haven’t:
- To provide a safe, happy environment for children to play, learn and socialise.
- To provide a welcoming place for all parents and carers to make friends and feel supported
- To make a positive contribution to the life of our community
Underpinning our aims is our belief that people matter to God and are loved by Him. We believe that every aspect of a person’s life is important to God and we are motivated by the life, message and character of Jesus to aspire to meet the needs of the whole person and the whole community because everybody is valuable to God.
We meet from 9.00 am until 11.30 am each Friday, during each school term. There are toy, craft activities and singing for the children, tea, coffee and homemade cakes for the carers!! Throughout the term there will be ad hoc activities, such as outings and special sessions-watch this space for more details.
We try to keep our fees at a reasonable price and your entrance fee includes your first drink as well as juice and biscuits for your child/ren. We also offer homemade cakes, the sale of which helpa to boost our equipment fund.
Health and Safety
Prams and buggies:
In order to comply with our Health and Safety policy, these must be left in the entrance hall downstairs, where they will be expertly watched over by one of our regular team members.
These are marked in the hall.
If you hear the fire alarm or are told to evacuate the building by a team member, then please make your way in an orderly fashion through the fire exits and assemble by the back entrance to Domino’s Pizza, across the road from the church, where a register will be taken. Please do not leave until your name and those of your charges are accounted for on the register. Do not use the lift in the event of a fire or other emergency evacuation.
We have a number of policies relating to safe and best practice for the Toddler Group. Please ask if you would like to see these.
In line with current legislation and good practice our policy is available for
you to view and a statement of our safeguarding practice is displayed on the
noticeboard by the registration desk.
You should have been given a registration form to complete when you arrived today. Your details are protected under data protection laws and will only be used for the purposes of this group. It is important that we have accurate personal details to aid us in the event of an emergency or if you/your child is taken ill or has an accident whilst on the premises.
To comply with our Health and Safety policy, we are required to keep a register of all attendees at the Toddler Group each week. Chris, our team member in charge of the register will sign you and your children in and out. This is essential good practice in the event of an emergency.
As a group we have a working relationship with Surestart who periodically run craft sessions for us and have provided us with musical instruments for the children. You may be asked if you would like to register with Surestart as a result of registering with this group. You are not obliged to register, but Surestart run a number of activities for children and families which you may be interested in hearing about. They don’t run this group.
We are required to keep a record of accidents which occur whilst on the church premises for insurance purposes. Please let us know in the unfortunate event of an accident happening to either your child or yourself.
Toilets and nappy changing:
The toilets are located in the downstairs hall. Please do not leave your child unattended whilst you use these facilities.
Babies and toddlers who require nappy changing should be changed on the stage area at the front of the hall, where there are changing mats, anti-bacterial spray and a nappy bin.
Please can we request that nappy changing is only carried out by yourself.
For publicity purposes we sometimes use photographs of the children for our church noticeboards and in the local press. As part of this welcome pack you will have been given a permission slip which you should complete, sign and return to a team member if you are happy for us to use photographs of your child in this manner.
Whilst we endeavor to keep all toys clean and safe, they do get ‘heavy usage’. If you see a toy which may require a bit of tlc, then please alert a team member.
If your child has had sickness/diarrhea, please can we request that you stay away from the group until 48 hours after the last episode.
We would also appreciate it if you could keep children away from the group if they have Conjunctivitis, also Slapcheek/Chickenpox and Measles, until all spots have gone.
This request also extends to older siblings.
It is important to us that every member of this group feels relaxed, supported, safe and secure. In order to achieve this, we have a few simple ground rules that will help us enjoy our time together:
Your child’s safety and the way he/she relates to other children is your responsibility. So if he/ she is about to throw a brick, please intervene!!
- If another parent expresses concern about an action of yours or your child’s, listen graciously and try to explore each other’s points of view, even if you feel you have been misunderstood or you don’t agree. Stay friends!!
- Please take care with drinks and personal belongings.
We do value your comments on the group and would also like to know if you have any concerns or suggestions about how we can do things differently. Please let us have your feed back.
We hope that you will enjoy being here. Nikki and Chris