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Wendy McLoughlin, founded the organisation primarily responding to a need that she found severely lacking in 1970s Hartlepool. Caring for a young disabled daughter Wendy soon discovered there were very little educational and social resources available to them. Wendy wrote a letter to the Hartlepool Mail, it said that she felt isolated with a one-year-old child and that they couldn't get involved in any groups. As a result of the letter she received many calls from other parents that were in the same position. The group of parents, which eventually grew to 30-strong, would meet at member's homes, they understood socially and emotionally how each other felt. It was those meetings which inspired Wendy to develop a library with special needs equipment such as bikes. Today The Speical Needs Toy Library is still very much in demand, with membership numbers at 1954 we provide a low cost solution for families to try and borrow specialist equipment, that may well be out of financial reach. 

What began as a voluntary group has flourished into a registered charity which employs 30 people such as health staff, qualified nurses, and play workers. Today Families First (North East) run over 10 projects providing relief and education to all local children, particularly those with additional and special needs. These projects include the provision of social, physical and emotional support. Every day more and more individuals are using our services and the demand for new activities increases.  This has inevitable pressures on our funding. The current financial difficulties facing everyone is also adding to our burden and making our fundraising task even harder. Which is why we need your help. Kieran's Story. 

How much does it cost to provide our services
It currently costs approximately £550,000 per year to maintain our exisiting projects, none of which is funded centrally by the Government. We annually need to fundraise £200,000 from the local community which is approx £550 per day. This will ensure our projects can continue supporting the hundreds of families that need us each year. Find out how you can Help Us, Help Them

There are a number of rewarding and funs ways you can help:

In return for your support, we promise every pound we receive will be used wisely, cost effectively and have a direct impact on people living in Hartlepool and it's surrounding areas. 

For more information on supporting us please contact the Fundraising Team at Families First (North East)

Telephone: (01429) 867 016

Email: lThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Your money will be spent locally on those children and families who need it most