A Sale playgroup was celebrating this week, when youngsters, parents, carers and supporters of the group joined the Mayor of Trafford, Councillor Rob Chilton, to mark its sixth birthday.
4 Cheeky Monkeys began life in 2012, when mother and daughter Lesley and Jeneane Warhurst started work restoring an old, run-down scout hut on Dawlish Road.
Two years later, and after much hard work, the playgroup opened on 3 March 2014, and the team began their journey to help to build the imagination, social skills and play time for children and their carers in Trafford.
Jeneane said: "We've had a fantastic morning celebrating 4 Cheeky Monkeys 6th anniversary, with grant funders and community groups that have supported us over the years. A big thank you to the Mayor of Trafford Cllr Rob Chilton for attending our event.
“We would also like to thank everyone that has made 4 Cheeky Monkeys such an amazing place, it's been an unbelievable journey and we've loved every minute of it."
Photo caption (L to R): Jonathan Baker, Capacity Builder at Trafford Housing Trust, Zoe Taylor, Senior Capacity Builder at Trafford Housing Trust, Mayor of Trafford, Councillor Rob Chilton, Lesley and Jeneane Warhurst.
The playgroup has a number of supporters, including Trafford Housing Trust, which offered help and advice in the early years to access funding.
More recently, the Trust provided a £24,000 grant through its Social Investment Fund to redevelop the entrance, pathways and outdoor play space to make them fully accessible for double buggies and wheelchairs. The grant has also helped to fund a new outdoor area for children and families to use.
Zoe Taylor, Senior Capacity Builder at Trafford Housing Trust, said: “4 Cheeky Monkeys plays a vital role in supporting parents and grandparents through the early years of parenting. The centre provides not only a safe and stimulating place for babies and toddlers to play, but also offers somewhere to meet other like-minded people, which reduces the risks of loneliness and isolation for new parents.
“Jeneane and Lesley’s dedication to the centre and the families that use it is a huge asset to the community. We’re thrilled to join them to celebrate their sixth birthday, especially with the new outdoor developments that will make the years ahead even more exciting for children in the area.
Mayor of Trafford, Councillor Rob Chilton, said: “This is all started eight years ago when Lesley and Jeneane had a vision of what an old, neglected building could become. Their dedication and persistence, along with support from a number of parties in Trafford, has made it in to the great place it is today.
“As the local councillor it has been wonderful to watch 4 Cheeky Monkeys grow and turn in to a community hub, where parents and carers can bring their kids to warm and familiar surroundings.”
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