Children's Links is a brilliant charity based in the market town of Horncastle, Lincolnshire. It operates throughout the UK, supporting potentially stressed children and families in every conceivable way.
I came across it at the best child contact centre I have ever visited (and, as a former chair of Families Need Fathers, I have been to many), in Gainsborough.
Three million children grow up apart from a parent and more than a million have lost touch completely. Often the only way to keep children in touch is through the friendly neutral ground of a contact centre, and it takes real imagination and skill to create conditions that help to make every minute of an all-too-short hour or two valuable for both parent and children.
Children's Links does that very well at its four contact centres, with superb staff on hand to help. It also facilitates visits for children to see parents in the difficult environments of prison and the nearby immigration removal centre.
Regular prison visiting is particularly important for the long-term effect it has on reducing reoffending. Children's Links helps parents who need a bit of advice, it runs playgroups at the drop of a hat and has a brilliant toy library to make each playgroup a success.
Tens of thousands of children in difficult circumstances not of their own making have felt confident, safe and valued with Children's Links helping them to shine.
Charles Kenyon lives near Market Rasen, firstname.lastname@example.org