A new initiative by the Aggie Weston’s Storybook Waves project has secured funding from the Annington Trust of over £40,000 for the next three years. Launching at the end of September 2017, the ‘Storybook Waves Book Club in a Box’ initiative seeks to relieve the anxiety of separation that families experience by connecting them through books and a nationwide network of Book Clubs.
Held in community houses at 21 base port areas, the Book Clubs will generally be hosted by Aggie Weston’s Pastoral Workers and will run monthly during term time. Aimed primarily at families of deployed personnel, The Book Clubs will seek to bring families together for fun-filled activity sessions based around the theme of a popular children’s book. While children play, parents can socialise and Pastoral Workers will be on hand to provide support and a listening ear to anyone struggling with the challenges that deployment can bring.
Project Manager, Kathryn Hearn, commented: “I am absolutely thrilled that the Annington Trust has provided such a generous grant; the funds provided will enable us to deliver this exciting new Club. We all know that deployments and weekending brings challenges for those left at home, it impacts family life and whilst most families cope very well sometimes additional support can be very welcome. The Storybook Waves Book Club In A Box aims to provide a slot in each month where parents and children can come together, mix with families in similar situations and build bonds, all whilst the children are entertained through the power of books.”
Reverend Paul Andrew, Chaplain RN said: “I am delighted to hear about the Storybook Waves Book Club In A Box. The idea that the families of deployed ships could be brought together in this new way, is in my mind really exciting. I can already see many benefits in bringing those isolated together, providing something unique.”
“Aggie’s Storybook Waves is a simple, thoughtful and sensitive way of bringing pleasure to the families of our sailors. These Book Clubs will help to reduce isolation, bring communities together and strengthen those vital support networks Service families deserve,” says Helen Liddell, Chair of the Annington Trust. “We hope the Book Clubs will help build community cohesion within the ‘patch’ or amongst the deployed ship families. Annington is proud to be supporting the Clubs.”
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Notes to Editors:
About Aggie Weston’s Storybook Waves
For almost 10 years, Aggie Weston’s Storybook Waves project has been helping serving personnel to maintain the relationship with their children by recording bedtime stories which can be listened to during separations. During this time the charity has helped thousands of children feel connected to their serving parent whilst they are separated, be it through deployment or other service related reasons.
For more information, please contact Kathryn Hearn, Project Manager Aggie Weston’s 0300 30 20 183
About the Annington Trust
The Annington Trust was established in 1996 at the time of the MOD’s sale of the Married Quarters Estate to Annington. The Trust was established for the benefit of Service Families living on the MQE, with the objective of sponsoring community activities and projects.
For further information about The Annington Trust, visit www.anningtontrust.org