Last year was the most successful year to date for the Bright Horizons Foundation for Children, with our charity opening a record 12 new Bright Spaces.
This included extending our range of partners and beneficiaries we support to include two Bright Spaces at the Care Afloat children’s homes in Lancashire, as well as becoming involved in the Lighthouse project which saw the UK’s first Child House open in London.
Our support was also extended to include a Bright Space at HMP Bronzefield women’s prison, which saw three of our nurseries (Asquith Teddington, Kew and Cisco) raise a combined total of £6,000 towards that specific project as part of the fundraising drive. Justice Minister Edward Argar was in attendance for the official opening and said that “building and sustaining family ties is not only a vital part of successful rehabilitation but it plays an important role in improving the life chances of the next generation.”
Bright Spaces are indoor and outdoor play environments in homeless shelters, domestic violence refuges, refugee centres, child protection interview suites in police stations, hospitals, hospices and visiting areas in prisons. They provide children with the opportunity to play, learn, build positive relationships and heal from trauma in a place of safety.
Fundraising in 2018 hit an impressive total of £135,000, with an even more ambitious target having been at £157,000 (£25,000 has already been raised so far). Further evidence of that momentum being carried over into 2019 from last year include the openings of two new Bright Spaces already, for the Metropolitan Police Child Abuse Team in Eddmonton, London and at HMP/YOI Isis in East London.
The Foundation’s recent Bright Space Partner Survey confirmed that more than 12,500 disadvantaged children were supported in our Bright Spaces in 2018, with all partners determining that a positive impact had been made on the children and families that use them.