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The mother making shopping more fun for parents and children alike
A single mother-of-six from Bushey is hoping to encourage families to spend more quality time together, by offering free parent child workshops.
Barbara Yeboah-Hinton, of Hartspring Lane, holds the classes every Saturday and Sunday in community rooms in Asda, Watford.
Since starting the sessions at the end of August, she said she has seen a steady influx of users, looking to take advantage of the free workshops.
The 46-year-old said: "I first came upon the idea when I was shopping with my daughter. I saw a parent getting really frustrated with their child after she started crying and throwing a tantrum in the store.
"It wasn’t the fault of the child or parent, but I could see that the parent was at the end of their tether. I thought to myself, wouldn’t it be a great idea to make shopping more harmonious for the child and parent? From there, my idea was born."
Ms Yeboah-Hinton is encouraging parents to spend time with their children at the workshops, by painting, making crafts or playing.
The nursery owner said: "Shopping is stressful at the best of times, so I wanted to change that experience for all involved. The only prerequisite is that parents can’t just leave their children at the workshop. They have to stay and spend time with them."
Although the classes are free, Ms Yeboah-Hinton is accepting donations – with all cash going to either Great Ormond Street Hospital or Asda’s chosen charity for the month.
So strong is her belief that these classes are a necessity in today’s society, Ms Yeboah-Hinton is also on the hunt for volunteers and other communities to adopt her idea.
The grandmother-of-three said: "Unfortunately, we live in a day and age where people just do not have time for each other. I want to change that.
"I’ve already visited Watford’s job centre and I’m offering single parents free childcare sessions while they attend job interviews.
"But I want this to go further afield. Asda has more than 300 stores around the country. Why can’t other areas adopt my idea? It’s just about giving up a bit of your spare time to give something back to the community.
"We need volunteers to help us with our weekend sessions. Asda has offered to let us use the room during the week as well, so we need volunteers for then too.
"I’m not looking to change the world, but people need to start caring about their fellow man. With this idea, not only am I hoping parents will spend more time with their families, but single parents will have more opportunities to find work, and volunteers will get work experience and help out their local communities."
To find out more, call Barbara on 01923 839 080.