Mystery surrounds “disappearance” of Chafford parenting business
Date posted: 30-08-2012
MYSTERY surrounds what has happened to an organisation that supplies services, delivers courses and organises events for children in health, sport and education in Thurrock.
The organisation, First Parenting used to operate from 40 Orsett Road, Grays, and also ran courses and classes for parents and children at the High House Production Park in Purfleet reports the Thurrock Enquirer.
However, they have vacated those premises and the Enquirer understands they owe considerable sums in rent at both.
First Parenting, which offered a wide range of services, had its origins in a newsletter launched several years ago by Chafford Hundred mum Claire Adekola.
Claire said she was inspired to start the project after finding it difficult to integrate with her community after the birth of her child.
The project grew and claimed to have links with local schools and community organisations, but now appears to have folded.
After several attempts the Enquirer contacted Ms Adekola on Wednesday and asked her what was happening with First Parenting and its financial situation.
However, she said: I am not obliged to talk to you about this and I wont comment and then she hung up.
That seemed a far cry from the early days of her newsletter Chafford Mum and the foundation of First Parenting.
In an interview with YourThurrock in 2008 Claire said: As a resident whose only engagement was to get up and go on a train and commute to London, suddenly having a baby I wanted to get in touch with the community so I came up with the newsletter which gave parents about what they could do with their child locally and also offer support to business by them advertising on it.
The media give us an impression of what motherhood should be about, which is unrealistic so I wanted to reach out and support other mums because we are all doing a great job.
From the newsletter beginnings, Ms Adekola expanded the project, offering nanny care and a host of other services for parents including workshops. body zeal clinics, and even recruitment services to help people find work locally.
It also ran sub groups including Messy Playtime and Little Fishes Pre-school.
First Parenting employed a number of local people and had a strong public profile, including have a stall at the 2011 T-Fest and it was present at a number of other local events.
However, the profile of the organisation began to drop and they left the premises in Orsett Road earlier this year but still ran courses at Purfleet, where it hired rooms at the new Production Park public facility between September 2011 and June 2012.
Thurrock Council says it has no formal record of First Parenting but is looking into the organisation and its operations in the Borough.