Yesterday we talked about needing support systems to help prevent losing control. Today I came across this article on Building a Mommy Support System from Parents.com. We all need support systems in our lives – mothers, fathers, grandparents, caregivers. This is a good article to give you some coping tools to deal with the stress of parenthood.
As a child care provider, you can use some of these tips but they are good to share with new parents. You see them everyday when they drop of little Suzy and Tommy. Do they look frazzled or stressed? Do they need a helping hand in dealing with the pressures of parenthood? Are they at their wits end? You could be the one that prevents the child suffering from abuse due to pure exhaustion and frustration of parents. Here are some tips taken directly from The Role of Professional Child Care Providers in Preventing and Responding to Child Abuse and Neglect – Child Abuse and Neglect User Manual Series (2006, p.111)(https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubPDFs/childcare.pdf)
- Facilitating friendships and mutual support. Offer opportunities for parents to get to know each other, develop mutual support systems, and have roles at the center, as appropriate. This may include potlucks or volunteer opportunities.
- Strengthening parenting. Develop ways for parents to get support on parenting issues when they need it. Possibilities include tip sheets, provider-parent meetings, and resource libraries.
- Responding to family crises. Offer extra support to families when they need it, such as in times of illness, job loss, housing problems, or other stressors.
- Valuing and supporting parents. The relationship between parents and staff is essential to a program’s ability to connect with parents. The support, training, and supervision of staff are essential to help them do this effectively.
- Facilitating children’s social and emotional development. Some programs use curricula that specifically focus on helping children articulate their feelings and get along with others. When children bring home what they learn in the classroom, parents benefit as well.
- Observing and responding to early warning signs of child maltreatment. Train staff to observe children carefully and to respond at the first sign of difficulty. Early intervention can help ensure children are safe and that parents get the support and services they need.
- Making referrals to other services or professionals as needed. For example, suggest that parents speak to their child’s doctor about any concerns, frustrations, or questions regarding their child’s behavior or development or connect the family with community service providers.
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I am an educator in every facet of my life. I teach early childhood education in the classroom and online as well as develop online training and professional development for employers. I also teach homeschoolers literature and homeschool my 17 year old son who graduates in May.