Home-Start: Families in Need

| Published on May 26, 2016

Katharine lends a hand to families in need

Katharine Jones, Land Law Partner at Humphries Kirk Solicitors’ Dorchester, has been volunteering as a legal advisor with family support charity Home-Start West Dorset since November 2012. Families across West Dorset, Weymouth and Portland benefit from the expert staff and well-trained volunteers to help parents build better lives for their children.

Since beginning in 1973, Home-Start UK has grown from one scheme to hundreds of local bases. Home-Start West Dorset became operational in March 2009 and is a local independently funded and governed charity, following the ethos of Home-Start UK. The service includes a variety of support including emotional, parental, practical, and social. In order to qualify for support, a family must have a volunteer local to them and have one child under the age of five.

The charity works with both parents and children, for example if they are coping with bereavement, family breakdown or feel unable to connect with their local community, the service will be there to provide help and advice. Katharine’s work entails being an advisor to the Trustees and staff providing guidance and support. This can be related to the running of the scheme or our direct work with families. Katharine has been able to use her links with the local business community to help the charity increase its profile and promote the work of the scheme.

Over 2015/2016 Home-Start supported 99 families, including 245 children. A total of 1,198 volunteer visits took place, which provided the charity with 2,981 hours of support.

To find out more about the services that Home-Start provide, or how you can help, visit

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