Lisa and her son Ethan attend Holdsworth’s playgroup sessions once or twice a week, and love connecting with other families, exploring new activities and tapping into the expert knowledge of the playgroup team.
If you live in Lisa’s apartment block and you’ve just had a baby, or if you and your toddler bump into Lisa at the supermarket, there’s a high chance she’ll hand you a Holdsworth playgroup brochure. In fact, she keeps a stash of them in her handbag for those very opportunities.
So what is it about Holdsworth that Lisa is so taken with?
It all started with Lisa’s elderly neighbour. Lisa had been helping with her care, and knew her neighbour was utilising Holdsworth services. But it wasn’t until Lisa looked into it that she realised they provided family services as well as supporting healthy ageing.
Like many parents whose children were born in the middle of the pandemic, Lisa places great value on social connection. For her and her two-year-old Ethan, Holdsworth has been a consistent and integral part of their lives since Ethan was just a few weeks old.
And as a sleep-deprived carer with family in other parts of NSW, but seemingly as far as the other side of the world during lockdown, having the comfort of a qualified facilitator at Holdsworth to guide the sessions and lean on for advice was worth its weight in gold.
“So many of us were going through the same things at the same time,” she says. “It was great to have a safe space where you could talk about it, but also have someone who’s qualified to help.”
Ethan and Lisa started at Holdsworth’s Bub Hub, a dedicated space for newborns, and after he started walking, they joined playgroup. Even through strict lockdowns when the centre couldn’t open, Holdsworth ran online classes with interactive activities for the kids and specialist speakers for the parents, which, for Lisa, was a lifeline.
And despite the fact Lisa can’t work out how to do the actions for incy-wincy spider (for the record, it is confusing), she’s still managed to find common ground with other parents while they watch their little ones sing and dance along to nursery rhymes.
“You get to connect with people that you might not have met if you’d just stuck to your friendship circles. It’s nice, because they’re local, and we can do trips to the park and other activities,” says Lisa.
Aside from the social outlet for her and the safe play learning environment for Ethan, Lisa loves the all-weather approach of Holdsworth playgroup.
“It’s not just that it’s an indoor place, it’s got outdoors too, so you’re not wasting a sunny day,” she says. “And you can still go on a wet day, in fact, they’ve got a dryer if Ethan’s clothes get too wet jumping in puddles.”
And for a two-year-old, isn’t jumping in puddles all that really matters?
Do you have little ones who would love the opportunity to play in a safe environment? Would you like to chat to other parents in your area?
Get in touch Family Services team and find out how Bub Hub, Playgroup or our parenting support programs could be right for you!