The Brazilian international was joined by the Mayor of Waltham Forest, Cllr Liaquat Ali, Cllr Peter Herrington, and the centre’s Community Governor Patrick Coppeard.
Gilberto was given a tour of the centre, taking part in a game of football with the children and awarding one lucky member of staff with the Best Shot Shield for all their hard work.
The 31-year-old said: “I have two children of my own so I can appreciate the work the centre does. I was impressed with how many activities there are for parents and carers, as well as the children, to get involved in, and I enjoyed my visit.”
Ridgeway Park is a Sure Start children’s centre at the heart of the government’s Every Child Matters initiative, jointly run by College Gardens Nursery and Wellington Primary School.
The centre aims to improve the outcomes and life chances for local children and young people, aged 0-19, reaching disadvantaged and vulnerable families using highly trained and qualified staff.
The centre offers good quality, affordable and accessible childcare provision as well as advice, support and training for parents and carers.
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Gilberto was a special guest at the Ridgeway Park Children Centre open day in Chingford on Thursday afternoon.