Little Village is set to open in Hackney, in what will be the charity’s sixth baby bank and its first east London outpost.
The new baby bank will open on 23rd May 2022 at the Hackney Family Centre off Harrington Hill in Lower Clapton.
The new baby bank will be called the Hackney Family Support Centre and has been set up by three charities: Little Village, Boiler House Spaces which manages community spaces in Hackney; and Sal’s Shoes, which provides good quality second-hand shoes and other essentials to those who need them. It is being funded by a national housing association, Guinness Partnership.
The baby bank will provide essentials for babies and young children, including items like clothes, shoes, cots, nappies, toiletries, buggies and toys to families needing extra support. It will help local families with children aged 0-5. Parents will also be able to find details of where to find further support.
Sophie Livingstone MBE, CEO of Little Village, said:
“It’s incredibly sad that there is such need for a new baby bank in Hackney, that there are so many families who are unable to provide the basics for their babies and young children. But whilst there is a need, we will do all we can to help.
“We are looking for lots of support so if you would like to donate your pre-loved children’s items, or volunteer to help out, please get in touch.”
About 48 per cent of children in Hackney live in poverty according to figures compiled by Trust for London, way above the London average. It also has one of the highest rates of households in temporary accommodation, with 28 households per 1,000.
Donations of good quality clothing and kit will be welcome from 24th May. A special donation event is being held at the centre from 11-2pm on Tuesday 24th May, and donations will then be welcome every Monday from 10am-12pm. Details on what items can be accepted can be found here.
Find out more
An open day will be held from 1-5pm on 25th May. People can find out how to access support or volunteer.
Volunteers are needed from Monday to Wednesday each week, with full training provided. A creche will be provided on Mondays, enabling volunteers with young children to get involved.
Families with children under 5 needing support from the baby bank can ask a professional, like a midwife, health visitor, or social work to refer them using the form here.
Notes to Editors
Little Village is London’s largest baby bank network, with locations in King’s Cross, Wembley, Roehampton, Southwark and Wandsworth. The charity provides clothes and equipment for children up to the age of 5 including safe places to sleep, hygienic feeding equipment, buggies to get out and about and toys and books to support development. Items provided are good quality second hand gifts donated by the local community.
The Guinness Partnership
The Guinness Partnership was founded 132 years ago and is one of the largest affordable housing and care providers in England. Guinness is committed to improving people’s lives by providing as many high-quality affordable homes as possible, and the housing and care services that customers most need. Guinness has more than 140,000 customers across the country, living in more than 64,000 homes.
We invest in a wide range of activities, working with partners to give people access to opportunities, develop their careers, learn, or support their communities.
Boiler House Community Spaces runs three other community spaces in Hackney and will operate the space. Families visiting the baby bank will be able to access additional services offered by Boiler House Spaces at the Northwold Youth & Community Hub which includes a food pantry and signposting, guidance services and skills development.
Shoes are relatively difficult to recycle because of all the different components they’re made up of. And children tend to outgrow their shoes before they outwear them, so Sal’s Shoes finds their preloved shoes new feet. Sal’s Shoes works nationally and internationally and to date has distributed over 3,000,000 pairs of shoes in 56 countries around the world. Last year, over 41,000 pairs of shoes were distributed across the U.K.