A CHILDREN and family support centre set up by a group of friends in Royston has grown from a one-room operation to become one of area’s most vital services.

Founded at the beginning of the year, Glasgow's No.1 Baby & Family Support Service now has a larger base across five large rooms in Royston’s Millburn Centre, moving from one of the founder’s garages.

It was established by Audrey Dempsey, Annmarie Sawyers, and Sharon Devlin as a way to help the local community but has expanded beyond the city-borders, now helping people in Cumbernauld and Barrhead.

Audrey and Annmarie are supported by longstanding volunteer, Carol Ann McGurk.

Audrey and Carol Ann are both employees of Cordia (Services) LLP in the organisation’s children and families service which supports households which may need some extra help.

Audrey said: “I’ve been working for Cordia for eight years and in this time, I’ve seen a noticeable increase in the number of people struggling financially.

"The centre resulted after we all got together to try and find a solution which can help the community around where we live.

"I don’t think any of us expected it to grow so quickly but the work is so important and it’s something we all really enjoy.”

The centre distributes clothes, toys and furniture to service-users across the city, accepting donations from generous benefactors.

Furniture and clothes for children between the age of five and 16 are always in high demand.

It is also on the hunt for new premises with its current lease coming to an end in April 2018.

While it accepts professional referrals, it is one of the only services of its type in Scotland with an ‘open-door policy’, handling requests from anybody regardless of their situation.

In September, it handed out almost 80 support packages, benefitting more than 55 families.

As its operation continues to expand, it is now an officially registered Scottish Charity and on December 8 will host its inaugural Christmas Fundraising Ball in Petershill Function Suite.

If anyone would like to donate or enquire about using the service, contact 07512145068 or visit the Millburn Centre.