A MUM of two has had to deal with her fair share of difficulties but is now using her own experiences to help put a smile back on other people’s faces.
Kath McGleenan-Reed, from Birchwood, now dedicates three hours of her time each week to work as a volunteer with the Warrington Guardian’s charity of the year, Home-Start Warrington.
In the last year, Home-Start volunteers have provided more than 3,700 hours of support to families.
The 45-year-old said: “For me, it was just the right thing to do at that time in my life. I had been suffering with mental health problems and I had been down that road but now I am able to give back and show people you can get through it.”
As a busy mum of two, Kath had her hands full but after hearing about the great work Home-Start Warrington achieve in the borough, she knew this was something she had to do.
She added: “I have been on benefits for the past four years as my health had deteriorated. I hate being on benefits but this was a great opportunity for me to give back to the community.”
Since signing up as a Home-Start Warrington as a volunteer 18 months ago, Kath hasn’t looked back.
She said: “When you get to know a family you make a connection. Sometimes it is hard to go home and put it behind you but at Home-Start we support each other while supporting the families.
“Sometimes they need help for drug addiction or alcohol or sometimes they are just in need of another pair of hands.”
Her time at Home-Start Warrington has also given Kath back her confidence and has helped her overcome her own issues.
“I am just coming out of the other side and everything is going really well,” she said.
Scheme manager Kate Griffiths said: “Our volunteers are experienced people who have gone through the highs and lows of parenthood. Without our Home-Start Volunteers there would be no Home-Start.”
To find out more information visit homestart-warrington.org.uk or call 652320.