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Valuable contribution of Western childcare services recognised at 2019 Western Childcare Partnership Conference


The Mayor, Councillor John Boyle pictured at the Western Childcare Partnership celebration event in Derry/Londonderry on 6 March 2019 with, from left, Danny Cassidy, Vice-Chair, Western Childcare Partnership, Penny Tassoni, President of PACEY, keynote speaker, Kevin Duffy, Family Support, Western Trust, Dr Una Lernihan, Health and Social Care Board, Pauline O'Hagan, Positive Futures, and Maura Mason, Manager, Western Childcare Partnership.

“Childcare services in the Western area make a valuable contribution in the development of our next generation of resilient young adults capable of coping with the challenges of a fast paced 21st Century World.”

This was the key message from the annual Western Childcare Partnership Conference held in Derry/Londonderry on 6 March 2019.

Click here to view our photo gallery from the conference.

Launching the event, Una Lernihan, Western Childcare Partnership Chair, said: “I am very pleased to welcome our Early Years and childcare experts today as we take this opportunity to share information and best practice in the Early Years and Childcare sectors. The Childcare Partnerships are in a unique position to share learning and research, working across a range of Government departments to deliver on a range of children’s strategies in Northern Ireland. Today’s conference demonstrates how statutory, voluntary and community organisations can work together in supporting the ongoing development of quality childcare services.”

The Mayor, Councillor John Boyle pictured with speakers and contributors, from left, Sarah Smith, Roberta Marshall, Dr Una Lernihan, Health and Social Care Board, Janie Dougan and Beth McComish, at the Western Childcare Partnership celebration event in Derry/Londonderry on 6 March 2019.

John Boyle, Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, joined a host of speakers who highlighted the value of intervention in the early years of a child’s life in ensuring the best health and developmental outcomes for the children of the Western area.

More than 120 early years representatives from local day care nurseries, Sure Start projects, childminders, preschool and school aged childcare providers attended this yearly event which provides the opportunity to share expertise and good practice in meeting the needs of children during their early development through the provision of quality early years and childcare services.

Guest speaker Penny Tassoni MBE, author and education consultant, focused on the development and support of self-regulation and how children’s language levels can affect their behaviours. Conference contributors included Roberta Marshall and Janine Dougan from Barnardos, Teresa Sweidan and her team from RISE NI (Regional Integrated Support for Education NI) and Pauline O’Hagan from Positive Futures. Helena Byrne, storyteller and songstress, provided a storytelling performance which not only entertained but equipped childcare staff with the skills to engage in storytelling in their work.

For further information from the event or to learn more about the work of the Western Childcare Partnership click here or contact Maura Mason, Manager of the Western Childcare Partnership on 028 9536 1043 or via email at maura.mason@hscni.net.