Gill O'Connor helps out at Casllwchwr Primary School, Swansea, a school attended by her two daughters, Katie and Mairead.
"I've got two children at Casllwchwr School, Mairead and Katie. It's an excellent school and the headteacher, Mr Davies, is very proud of the children and very encouraging of them. I think that has a positive effect on the parents too, because everyone wants the best for the children.
I used to work as a cartographer and then a tailoress. I'm a self-taught seamstress and I suppose I'd describe myself as being quite "arty", although I'm not an artist. I'm someone who is quite creative and if I think I can turn my hand to something I'll have a go.
That's how I started doing things for the school really. The curtains in the hall needed to be completely renovated and it was going to be a very expensive job. They needed to be relined and that's costly, so I thought I'd have a go.
I'm a member of the Parent Teachers Association and at one time I was a dinner lady at the school, so I've always been involved. I think it's important for parents to play a part if they can. We all have different skills to offer and sometimes it's a case of making the time if you haven't got it and giving something back because you don't realise how much you will get out of it until you do.
The last project I was involved in was making a banner which two of the children carried during a march highlighting the needs of primary education in Swansea. It bears the school moto on it: "I do and I understand", and there is a boy and a girl which I've made out of aplique. I've made a few different banners for different things and I made story sacks for the kids once. I made them at home but the children provided the illustrations for them. They went down really well and it was nice that the children were involved too.
I'm not able to do as much now because I'm working and that's a situation many parents find themselves in, but I do think it's important to do what you can when you can. I think my children are quite proud of what I've done over the years. When the last banner was ready to take into school they both wanted to do it which was nice!
Most of us have some skills we can pass on and the schools these days need as much help as they can get. In our school Mr Davies is always grateful for parent input and I know the other teachers appreciate it. I think parents would be surprised at what they get out of it too."