Salvation Army Worthing contact centre is situated on the edge of the town centre, close to the sea front and other local amenities with good rail and bus links. It has been running since 2018 when they were first accredited and is funded and part of the Salvation Army in Worthing initiatives and supportive schemes. The centre is located in the Worthing Salvation Army premises which are due to be demolished sometime late 2022. All services will be relocated to local school premises within a short walk until a new building on the same site is completed. When the centre is in operation between 10.00am – 1.00pm, no other services can operate within the building.
The centre entrance is at ground level with easy accessibility for all. The first floor is where the contact service is located and families can either use the stairs or lift to gain entry. The building has several rooms and a community café on the ground floor (at present due to Covid restrictions the café is not open). The centre has two entrances – one for the resident parent/children and one for the visiting parent. Signs are clearly displayed as to which entrance parents use as well as being discussed in pre visit meetings. Immediately when the families enter the building at either entrance a volunteer will sign in the families. The visiting parents will go straight up to the contact hall using the stairs or lift and then the children are taken up to the first floor where the contact hall is located by a volunteer once the visiting parent has arrived. There is a hatch between the contact hall and kitchen for serving drinks but at the time of the visit this wasn’t in use and families were bringing their own refreshments.
At the time of the visit the new co-ordinator had been in this role for approximately four months and had worked extremely hard in getting all the necessary documents required for the centre’s re-accreditation visit. The assessor found the centre very inviting, bright and a good standard of cleanliness. Throughout the re-accreditation process the co-ordinator was very professional in their manner. The co-ordinator informed the assessor that all volunteers are very dedicated to their roles and support all who attend the centre. The centre has in place clear procedures so it reduces minimum risk for all that attend. The coordinator said the importance of running a good service is the good and clear communication between all concerned. Families have enjoyed coming back to the centre and understand the importance of social distancing. They reported that when possible they like bringing toys for their child/ren to play with as they usually know what they like to play with. The centre will offer toys if families are unable to bring them to the session but once the family session is completed the toys are cleaned and set aside until they return in a fortnight’s time. They are not used by other services. The centre meets NACCC national standards required for supported centres and the assessor recommends the centre for re-accreditation.