Bedford Borough Council HQ Image:Bedford Borough Council

Following a public consultation at the start of 2021, Bedford Borough Council has introduced a new service delivery model for children’s centres at venues across the Borough.

A new model started on Friday (1 October 2021) and sees current provider Early Childhood Partnership (ECP) Bedford, on behalf of the Council, offer support to early years children and families from a number of venues across Bedford Borough.

Children’s Centre services will continue to work with the community and key partners to enable families access to a wide range of support for children and families prior to birth to aged five years old.

Children’s Centre services and support will be delivered across Bedford Borough communities from children’s centre buildings, community venues and also through online classes giving families more choice, closer to their homes.

Cllr James Valentine, portfolio holder for children’s services and Education, said:

“Following a period of consultation and review, I am pleased that this new way of working will be delivering children centre services for families, where they are needed.

“Our vision is to give all children and young people firm foundations in life, through a strong network of family, friends and communities. Children’s Centre services are for the community, by the community with the community.”

Nicola Lee, head of family support ECP/One YMCA, said:

“We are so pleased to have been awarded this contract, which follows on from the excellent services we have provided over the last five years for the children and families in Bedford Borough.

“We are very much looking forward to continuing to work with partners across the Borough and in particular to work more closely with our Health colleagues to provide a greater joined up service for families.

“We have found it is much easier for our children to thrive when them, their parents and professionals feel that they belong to a caring community, which we aim to provide here at ECP.”