Throughout 2019, we have contacted families leaving the service to see how they are getting on, and to ask them about their experiences at Dandelion Time. We asked them what impact the service has had on them and how we might be able to do things better. We asked them to complete an anonymous online survey. Carers were asked whether attending Dandelion Time helped their child, and if so, how it helped them.
This is what we we found:
- over 85% of parents said that their child was happier and more confident and had improved emotional well being
- 64% of parents said that their family had closer relationships
- more than half of parents said their child had increased self-esteem and better communication
Other benefits included improved behaviour, better engagement in school and improved friendships.
Carers considered which elements of the service were most important in helping to bring about these changes:
- over 90% of carers said being outside in nature and cooking as important, 80% said they especially benefited from craft work and animal care
- over 75% highlighted Dandelion Time’s approach of working with the child and carer/s together.
Time for carers and children to relax together, being provided with one-to-one support, and having time away from computer games were also identified as important by the majority of carers.
“Magic happens at Dandelion Time”
Dandelion Time aims to support the whole family to bring lasting change. We were delighted that 96% of carers said that the service had a positive impact not only on their child but on the wider family. Some of the feedback we received:
“Most definitely. Magic happens at Dandelion Time. It was the glue that held us together “.
“Dandelion time is the perfect mix of confident building tasks and time together as a family which for us was so needed. Time to focus on good things instead of the bad worries is great”.
We were keen for families to provide comments and suggestions about how the service could be improved. Our aim is to study these comments closely to see how we may be able to respond to these valuable points:
“We loved our time and it was perfect, the only comment I would have is maybe a catch up once a year with the team just to refresh what we should be continuing to do or pointing in the direction of extra help from other agencies”.
“Other than offering family counselling alongside the sessions. Dandelion is outstanding and the whole team are incredible”.
“…. a little more time with someone in Dandelion time for parents to talk and support for them with how to help deal with the challenges our children face….focusing on positive activities for the children is key and this has a great knock on with family life naturally, but often the parent needs a little more support to cope behind closed doors. We are so grateful for our time spent with Dandelion, they are simply amazing and the charity benefits so many families in need”.
“Dandelion time is run superbly and my children, and I, would not have changed a second of it”.