About Us

PATA is the largest voluntary sector provider of support to early years childcare and education in Gloucestershire. 

PATA’s reputation as an excellent source of support and information for children’s groups is built on experience and expertise and we are specialists in the voluntary sector.

PATA, originally Playgroup and Toddler Association, started in the 1960’s when community playgroups first began to form. We evolved along with the sector, working collaboratively with many other early years and childcare charities. Today, PATA (UK) remains one of only two of these original organisations and is now a charitable company run by, and for its members. The Board of Trustees is drawn from people with a variety of skills and knowledge from all parts of Gloucestershire.

PATA is a membership organisation with member groups drawn from all childcare sectors.

Over the years baby and toddler groups were welcomed into PATA’s membership and later the out of school sector as well as a number of private groups, children’s centres and schools. With more than 200 members to date we are by far the largest voluntary sector organisation supporting early years and childcare settings in and around the county.

PATA now provides training, support and information to this range of settings, both within and outside of our membership, enabling them to offer high quality childcare, education and play opportunities.

PATA is proud of its partnerships with the voluntary and private sectors, local authorities and other local and national organisations. Our project work enables us to offer targeted support to the childcare sector meaning we can continue to support children from birth to 16.

The PATA staff team is a small one that includes office staff as well as tutors. However, it grew considerably during 2017 with the fantastic addition of three community playgroups involved in our PATA Managed Groups Project. The project began in 2013, when during strategic planning for the coming years it was agreed we would undertake a project that wholly fulfilled our charitable objectives and with the ultimate aim that PATA would provide for the management of playgroups to enable them to become high quality and sustainable providers of childcare in their communities whilst maintaining their charitable status.

PATA @ Penguins, Elmbridge, Tiny Tots and Funbusters now officially fall under the PATA banner. Their addition means we continue to be best placed to fully support our member groups due to first-hand knowledge and experience of the challenges and successes community, committee run playgroups encounter in the current climate. 

See our Visions and Values

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