Editor’s comment: Well done to First Step on 30th birthday

PUBLISHED: 08:00 24 February 2018

L-R: Debbie Bennett, Michelle Mitchell fundraising manager, Mark Halls CEO, Allie Marchington, Caroline Hood and Janet Hutchinson.

L-R: Debbie Bennett, Michelle Mitchell fundraising manager, Mark Halls CEO, Allie Marchington, Caroline Hood and Janet Hutchinson.


This week we celebrate the 30th anniversary of the charity First Step in Hornchurch.

The Recorder has been a strong supporter since it was launched to help families caring for children with disabilities.

In 2015 we ran a year-long campaign to help raise money with our Fundraise on the First appeal.

We have regularly featured stories about the charity’s good work and activities and so it is great to see it still doing so well 30 years on.

First Step began in October 1988 in response to a plea from some parents of young children with special needs and/or disabilities. They felt they, and others in similar situations, could benefit from a group where they would be able to talk, share experiences, and provide support for each other in a non-judgmental environment.

It now works with more than 100 pre-school children, and their families, offering education services, support, information and encouragement.

First Step’s mission is to provide the best possible environment to support each family and to enable their very young children with special needs and/or disabilities to maximise their individual potential.

Here’s to the next 30 years. Well done, First Step.

Last week I called on the mysterious drain man to get in touch about his terrifying experience of being stuck down a Romford sewer.

And he did just that. David Miller spoke to the Recorder before any other media outlet to tell his story.

But it still leaves questions about how he ended up injured in the sewer pipes which run underneath our streets.

Poor David still doesn’t remember how he came to be in the sewer, all he knows is it was dark, cold and he thought he would die there, unable to lift any manhole covers to get out.

Fortunately his shouts were finally heard, he was lifted out, has been having treatment for the injuries he suffered and can now try to get back to a normal life.

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