The first time I came to the Family Room I was a stay at home mom to 9 month old twins. We had a VNA nurse come to the home who spoke about the dad’s group and family play. I finally ventured out during cold February and it seemed a huge task just getting the two car seats into the family room. But I remember how welcoming everyone was. I think Steve came outside to help me. Nell and Rosie were the staff I remember the most as being so warm, non-judgmental and helpful! I continued to attend family play until the kids “graduated” and were too old to attend the VNA. My family participated in strong families, simplicity parenting, dad’s group, yoga and cooking classes. I probably did every class that was offered there!
The thing I loved the most about the family room was the welcoming staff, the amazing programming, the food, and the warmth you could feel there. I also loved introducing my kids to different cultures and foods through the cooking classes. I made some really good friends there! And so did my kids. When my son had a worker through Vermont Family Network she asked me why I didn’t attend the play group in Colchester on Tuesdays since we live in Colchester. I told her, “Sorry but it doesn’t come close to family play at VNA family room.” I hope the VNA finds a way to continue funding this important program.
~ Deborah Wien