Coventry’s first ever Baby Week has been hailed a great success after reaching new-borns and families in all communities across the city.
The week was held in November and featured a diverse array of activities designed for babies and their parents and caregivers, underlining the immense importance of the first 1,001 days of a child’s life – from conception to age two.
This critical period lays the foundation for emotional and physical wellbeing, significantly impacting children’s futures.
At the heart of Baby Week was the ‘Start for Life’ offer delivered by Coventry City Council and a range of services and organisations dedicated to supporting families and ensuring Coventry’s children receive the resources they need to thrive in their first two years of life.
A total of 55 events were held in the week, with hundreds of people attending, including around 150 who attended the launch of the 50 Things to do Before You’re Five app, which is now available to download via Apple and Google.
Organisations gave away 1,000 goodie bags with essentials to help baby health , and there were sessions featuring singing, rhyme time, sensory play, baby massage, a puppet show, playdough fun, and active tots.
There were also talks and information sessions by midwives and health visitors, buggy walks, and even a visit from Dippy the Dinosaur. The week came to a close with a family showcase event at Butts Park Arena where families were able to explore various activities and resources dedicated to their babies’ wellbeing and development, all in one location and free of charge.
Cllr Patricia Seaman, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People at Coventry City Council, said: “We are delighted the week was such a success and would like to thank all the great organisations that took part.
“The week and all its events demonstrated our determination to put babies, children and families at the heart of all we do and make Coventry a truly child-friendly city where everyone is given the information and support they need to protect their family’s physical and mental wellbeing.”
Jane Moffat, Operational Lead for Early Help at Coventry City Council, added: “Supporting families during the critical 1,001 days of a child’s life is a responsibility we take seriously in Coventry, as these early experiences have a profound impact on children’s wellbeing and future prospects.
“Our first Baby Week showed that commitment and helped get the message out to families across the city that there is help available and people who care.”
The Start for Life Offer unites six essential services, collaboratively providing comprehensive support to parents and caregivers, including:
- Midwifery: Ensuring safe pregnancies and childbirth.
- Infant Feeding: Promoting optimal nutrition for infants.
- Health Visiting: Monitoring and supporting child development.
- Perinatal Mental Health: Supporting parental mental well-being.
- Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND): Assisting children with additional needs.
- Family Help/Safeguarding: Offering crucial family support and safeguarding services.
Beyond Baby Week, Coventry families are encouraged to seek support through the Family Hubs – eight welcoming spaces situated across the city, offering assistance to all children, young people, and families when they require help, advice, and support.