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Case Study 4

When Emma and her husband decided to relocate to the Southern Highlands from Wollongong for a better life, Emma didn’t realise that life would suddenly become more difficult.

Living away from her family and friends and trying to adjust to a new lifestyle as well as looking after two children (breast-feeding one child) became a challenging time.

“I felt helpless and isolated, especially since my husband worked long hours,” she said.

“When you have no one to help to look after your children, especially after caesarean birth, life seems to get harder. Moving to a new area is hard enough, but to live on an isolated farm and trying to look after your children, does become quite demanding.”

Emma made some enquiries to see whether she could get child-care, but she found that she needed to book well in advance.

She heard about Home-Start and this is where Yvonne, Coordinator of Home-Start Wingecarribee became involved.

Yvonne (coordinator) arranged for a volunteer to visit Emma twice a week at first and then once a week later on to help out.

Emma’s helping hand was June, who has become a Home-Start volunteer for almost two years.

“June became a friend and a nanny to my children,” Emma said. “She gave incredible support during this trying time.

“June would spend time playing with my eldest son, Elliott while I would breastfeed my youngest.”

Home-Start helped Emma for one year, mainly being an extra hand at home with the children and also when it came to doing the shopping.

“Home-Start became this guardian angel,” she said.

“Having June to talk to was comforting.”