In today’s society, 1 in 3 relationships/marriages in the UK end in separation or divorce. It has been estimated that 100,000 children per year in the UK lose contact with a parent following a family break-up. Child Contact Centres were set up to facilitate contact between a child and those parents, or other family members, with whom they no longer live. A Child Contact Centre provides a neutral, safe, welcoming environment for families who are experiencing difficulties with contact following the breakdown of family relationships.
Newtownards & Bangor Child Contact Centres welcome referrals from solicitors, social workers, the courts, other Voluntary Organisations or families themselves.
To discuss use of a centre, please phone the Coordinator, Mary-Anne Doherty. If no-one is available to take your call, please leave your name and phone number and you will be contacted as soon as possible.
Before a family uses the Centre a referral form must be completed. The Coordinator will speak to the referrer and to the parents and will arrange for the parents (or other family members) to visit the Centre to see around and to check the details about the contact arrangements. This also gives the parents a chance to ask questions or raise any concerns they may have. It is particularly helpful if the children can come and see round the building before meeting with their contact parent/adult.
Pre-contact visits can be arranged for Newtownards on Saturdays between 10.00 a.m. and 12.00noon and Bangor each Thursday 4pm - 6pm.
Resident and contact adults are required to sign a consent form which sets out the ground rules for use of the Centre. The Resident adult is also asked to sign a form giving consent for their child to receive basic First Aid if necessary or be taken for medical care in an emergency.
Referral Form, Consent Form and NINCCC Children's leaflet
A Centre can also be used as a handover point where visits take place outside the Centre. This must be agreed between the parents or other relevant adults or be by court order.
Parents do not have to meet if they prefer not to.
Guidlines for referrers
Newtownards & Bangor
Child Contact Centres
St Marks Parish Centre
Church St Newtownards BT23 4AN
each Sat 10am - 12pm
1st Bangor Presbyterian Church
Main St Bangor BT20 4AG
each Thursday 4pm - 6pm
m: 07540 143 700