I’m so glad we have experienced the Valmaura centre. We used to go whenever it was open, even when it was raining, even though we had to take two buses. Ares has never been to nursery, so for him the centre was also a place to make friends and meet others, as it has been for me. I didn't know many people in Trieste either, I was very busy with work, with odd hours, so I didn’t have much time for friendships, not to mention the fact that I have epilepsy and it isn’t very easy for me to fit in, but fortunately at the centre it wasn’t like that.
Once a month at the centre we had a clothes swap for the children, a great way to clear the wardrobe out and get new clothes. It was, and is, wonderful, because we always help each other out. For example, I was a pizza chef, and now that everyone is having a go at making bread and pizza at home, I give advice and tips about how to make dough, sourdough, and I’m happy to share a few tricks of the trade too, I feel useful.
We are doing videocalls, with the teachers, the other mums and the children, it’s a way to keep in touch and support each other, although we can’t wait to get back to the centre. Ares is the one who has the most fun, but he is also feeling the effect a little, because he wants to give the other children a hug, and all he has is the screen!
We have tried doing some of the activities at home together, such as the confetti with leaves that we made for Carnival, the aquarium puppet theatre for fish, and we also follow the advice the teachers give us on the Facebook group and on the group chat; this helped us to discover that Ares loves being in the kitchen making biscuits and pouring, for example. These activities are not just a way to spend time together, doing different things, but are also a way to get to know each other.
In quarantine, daily routines have changed; for some they have even stopped altogether. What hasn’t stopped is the precious time that children and adults spend together, and which has shifted from the centre into the home. This way Lara, a young mother of 25 who attends the THSN partner CSB Onlus centre in Trieste with her two-year-old son Ares, can keep in touch and keep sharing advice and ideas with the other mothers and the teachers at the centre.