Barnsley’s Parents as Partners in Early Learning (PPEL) funding was used to recruit parent champions via the National Children’s Homes (NCH) children’s centre in Bolton-on-Dearne – one of the district’s most economically-deprived areas. The parent champions worked alongside early years practitioners showcasing a variety of PPEL-funded early years resources and activities to several groups of parents. They also devised and carried out questionnaire-based research into the use of nursery rhymes by parents attending Sure Start baby clinics. One of the aims of their work was to shed light on the barriers that some parents experience in getting involved with their children’s early learning and using local services. The appointment of parent champions personalised the process and enhanced the engagement of all concerned: parents, children and practitioners.