Isolated and lonely with neither friends nor family nearby, Afagh is



Isolated and lonely with neither friends nor family nearby, Afagh is
Isolated and lonely with neither friends
nor family nearby, Afagh is now building
a new life in England with her son through
the support from a Guildford
Borough Children’s Centre
Finding the courage to seek help
Afagh moved to the UK six years ago, escaping the troubled
situation in Iran. However, Afagh now found herself alone in a
new country, without family or friends, and as she spoke very
little English she felt isolated and lonely.
Afagh and her four year
old son, Zanko, live in
“All I did was stay at home with my son which wasn’t a
good thing for either of us. I worried that he would suffer
from not meeting other people and in fact at that time he
was very shy and nervous when he saw strangers. When I
saw a notice about The Spinney Children’s Centre I decided
to pluck up the courage to go and find out if it could help us,
and now I will never forget it.”
“I was very inexperienced as a parent and there was so
much I didn’t know about how to look after my son,” she
says. “Because I had no family or anyone else to turn to I
had just muddled along and I didn’t feel I always got it right.
The staff at the Centre were extremely helpful, showing me
ways to help get Zanko to sleep, encourage better eating
habits, and all sorts of things which I was unsure about.”
The right decision
New confidence
The warm welcome which Afagh received at the Centre
persuaded her that she had made the right decision, and
soon she was happy to take Zanko regularly to Play and
Learn each week. She also found that the staff were more
than happy to offer her the parenting advice which she had
not had the chance to learn elsewhere.
Having access to such a wide variety of toys, books and
activities, not to mention the company of other people, Zanko’s
confidence began to soar and he is now, says Afagh, a happy
and sociable little boy, learning to speak English and doing
well. Afagh, too, is now completely fluent in English, to the
extent that she was able to undertake a Masters Degree in
Library Science, which she will shortly complete. “If it hadn’t
been for the Centre I don’t think any of this would have been
possible,” she says. “There was no-where else I could go with
Zanko where I could get the information, advice and general
overall support we had had, not to mention the chance to
meet people and make the good friends I now have.”
Part of the community
Zanko is now settled at Nursery, prior to
starting school later this year, and Afagh
plans to find a job as a Librarian; both are
happier than Afagh had expected could
be the case when she was a lonely and
unconfident single mother. “When I first
came over to the UK all I wanted was to
go home again and be with my family,
whatever the cost, but because of The
Spinney Children’s Centre I feel a part of the
community and of this country, and Zanko has
had the chance to have a good life here. I am
so grateful to the Centre which has helped us to
make a new start and given us hope for the future.”
For further information on Children’s Centres:
Guildford Children’s Centre
01483 566589
[email protected]
The Spinney Children’s Centre
01483 510570
[email protected]
Boxgrove Children’s Centre
01483 540818
[email protected]
Ash Grange
01252 350225
[email protected]
St Paul’s Children’s Centre
01252 400222
[email protected]