Community Play Co-ordinator in West Somerset

Firstly Let me introduce myself, my name is Suzanne Richards and I have taken the role of Clowns Community Play Co-Ordinator.

A little bit about myself, I have worked over the last 10 years in West Somerset. If I make just a small difference to one child’s day, change the attitude of a parent/carer or help a family to reconnect then to me that is a great day. I have always lived in West Somerset and have worked hard to provide a wide range of diverse activities in the area from trampolining groups, setting up gymnastic clubs, providing Inset Day Activity Days, Playschemes, introducing Wake and Shake to school assemblies and organising and managing Transition events for year 4’s going from Primary to Middle Schools.  To name but a few, I teach Gymnastics, Fundamentals, Balanceability, Wake and Shake and Orienteering.   Many of the activities I teach myself and have a particular soft spot for Key stage 1 and Pre School.  I have been told that I am a motivational person from parents/carers, class members, teachers and someone they feel they can relate to and trust.  I feel I help strike the balance between the business needs to balancing the community needs. I like a challenge and overcoming barriers and will work hard for West Somerset in this new role.

On a personal level I have two children, I teach Group Exercise including indoor cycling, kettlercise, circuits, bootcamps, hitt sessions  and fitness is a big part of my life, I enjoy cycling, running, walking and baking. 

West Somerset can easily get overlooked if we don’t fight for it.  It is an amazing area but does have additional challenges and barriers.  The project will work towards co-ordinating all activities in the area and sign posting families and children, it will also work towards developing activities in order to enhance the children and families lives and hope to cement positive lifestyle habits that will increase children’s attainment and aspirations.   

I joined the Clowns team on their Wild Walk at Dunster Duck Pond.  It took me back many years to when my children were small, the beautiful setting and weather was a bonus, but the whole session was engaging and imaginative from start to finish in the hands of Lauren and Jackie.  The opportunity to use nature, engage with the children using a range of skills helping with physical and social development. From Jackie’s random scattering of  plastic ducks for the children to find – and the children’s complete surprise how they kept finding more ducks and the bucket was empty was priceless, constant communication with children covering cross curriculum learning, a nice game of river sticks followed by a lovely nursery rhyme in the woods, back to the grass area under a tree to hear about “The Farmer” well co-ordinated with puppets from Jackie. As all activities ending with a biscuit and a drink.  The session was well planned, well executed and a credit to the Clowns team, the children were engaged, excited, confident, happy and completely entertained for the whole session.   

I am very much looking forward to this new role and what it throws at me.

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