Children and Families Minister Edward Timpson has praised the efforts of people working to improve children, young people and families’ lives, at the 2012 Children & Young People Now (CYP) Awards. Bromley Mencap was shortlisted in the Early Years category for their Childminding Network. The Award category acknowledges work that has ‘done the most to improve the life chances of babies and young children, especially among disadvantaged or hard-to-reach communities.’

The Childminding Network trains childminders to provide care for disabled children up to 16. Bromley Council provides funding towards additional activities provided by the Network for families in the borough. These include short breaks to allow parents and carers to take some time off, as well as one-to-one care for children with severe learning disabilities, complex medical needs and complex communication difficulties.

The CYP Now Awards are in their seventh year of recognising work done by individuals and projects across the UK to enable children, young people and families to live happy, healthy and fulfilling lives. This year there were nearly 400 entries for 19 award categories.

Eddie Lynch, Chief Executive of Bromley Mencap, said ‘Bromley Mencap is absolutely delighted to have been shortlisted for the Children and Young People Now Award amongst stiff competition. This recognises the quality of our childminding service, the value of the respite and short breaks it provides and acknowledges the importance of the preventative nature of the work we do. Our Childminding Network was the first of its kind in the UK to meet the childminding needs of disabled children and their parents and carers’.

Cllr Stephen Wells, Portfolio Holder for Education said: “This is great news. It is a testament to the quality of the services in our borough that Bromley Mencap is being recognised in this way.’

The Awards Evening, when results were  announced, took place on Thursday 29 November in Fulham, London.

Click here to view a full report on the Evening