Children’s home old boys and girls reunite for anniversary

Posted by / Thursday 30 June 2016 /

We're welcoming back former residents of our children’s homes to an annual reunion at our offices this weekend.

The ‘old boys and girls’, along with many of the sisters who looked after them, will be treated to a lunch and hear presentations from current chief executive Sir Tony Hawkhead and a young person who is supported by us today.

Formerly National Children’s Home (NCH), Action for Children was founded on July 9 1869 by Reverend Thomas Bowman Stephenson. His vision was for children to live together in family groups rather than in large institutional dwellings like workhouses.

"The Action for Children reunion was a delightful day. We all had great fun remembering our childhoods, sharing our memories and funny stories. What really pleased me was to meet so many wonderful people, who like myself had achieved our utmost goals in life. We all have NCH in common, the charity provided us a stable loving upbringing and helped to make us the happy people we are today."

Shirley-Anne Field, Action for Children Ambassador
Action for Children ambassadors Shirley-Anne Field (left) with Sister Eluned Williams (002)

In 2014, Actress and Action for Children ambassador, Shirley-Anne Field, who was brought up at one of our homes, attended the reunion. She said: “It was lovely to spend time with people like myself who grew up in an NCH home". 

Helen Lavelle, engagement manager at Action for Children, said: “The ‘old boys and girls’ reunion is great fun for remembering childhoods, sharing memories and funny stories. 

“All our guests have NCH in common, the charity which provided them with a stable loving upbringing. Over time, our work has shifted away from children's homes towards community-based projects like children's centres and intensive support services for vulnerable families."

Today, as Action for Children, we continue to support and speak out for children, young people and parents in tough circumstances. Helen notes that "We are still guided by Stephenson's legacy, but face the challenges of a very different society."

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