two women demonstrate baby massage on a doll

For many, becoming a parent is a wonderful, life-changing experience. But having a baby doesn’t come without its challenges. 

Parents want what’s best for their children. They want to ensure their needs are met, that they feel loved, and that the bond they share is unbreakable. There are many things parents can do to nurture that bond, but in recent years, vital services designed to support parents and their young ones have been subject to budget cuts.  

Lynne Wyles is a Childcare Services Team Leader from Clackmannanshire. Working closely with parents, she understands how important it is to provide support services for both them and their children. In Clackmannanshire, one of the best-loved services before the pandemic was baby massage, a tool designed to help parents soothe and comfort their baby, enhance development, and create strong bonds through positive touch.  

Passionate about her local community, Lynne was determined to fight for the reintroduction of parent support and child wellbeing services. In 2022, she applied for the Clackmannanshire Council and Family Wellbeing Partnership Intrapreneurship Programme. Through her participation, she gained the skills she needed to build a solid case for investment and communicate the value of services like baby massage to the Clackmannanshire Investment Team. Her hard work paid off, and she secured £5100 investment to turn her idea ‘Baby Bonds’ into action. 

Since securing investment, Lynne’s idea has had an incredible impact on parents across Clackmannanshire. In its first year, ‘Baby Bonds’ has been facilitated in 5 venues across the county, with 90% of attending parents completing the full course. Not only that, but 70% of babies born from September 2022 have benefitted from the reintroduction of baby massage services. 

But Lynne didn’t stop with the success of ‘Baby Bonds’. In January of 2023, she launched an Under 2’s support group at Alloa Family Centre, which allows parents and children to strengthen connections through sensory play, arts and crafts, building and construction. She has bold ambitions for the future and hopes to facilitate an Under 1’s group in future while extending their current offer to include access to outdoor facilities.