Parenting, particularly in this age, is not an easy task. Perhaps that’s why the National Commission for Families and Children (NCFC) launched a parenting guide on November 18, 2018. Today the NCFC and partner organizations held a training session for facilitators and guides to help people become better parents. Margaret Nicholas, the Executive Director for NCFC told us that participants in the session today, took on a hands on approach, taking the role of parents and children as they tested various sections of the guide.
Margaret Nicholas – Executive Director, NCFC: “Parenting is a very difficult and complex issue so today we have facilitators from all over the country who are actually parent educators and we are actually socializing the guide. We are going through the steps of the guide by doing presentations, activities and having the facilitators actually participate in the activities within the book: them becoming children, them becoming parents and actually working through it so that when they go back to their different communities that they are better able to use the guide. At the end of the day we will be the kind of results that we want because what we really want to do is to harmonize the way parenting is taught. We are very cognizant of the fact that parenting is taught by many organizations but we are parenting, they are teaching here and there and everywhere so we want standardization, we want harmonization and so hence the reason why we brought people from all over the country to be here today to share in the training. With this we also develop our managing and evaluation tool so at the end of six months, after this we will bring back this same group and we will be evaluating the skills that they have acquired and to see how impactful it has been in the country of Belize. It’s parent educators, it’s teachers, it’s health officials, it’s the Department of Youth Services, the Ministry of Human Development, the Churches, it is s a wide cross-section of our society. These are people who are going to be working in the communities and will be doing parenting classes with parents within their particular communities and that’s the way it is supposed to be trickled down to children, young parents and others who are involved with parenting.”
Reporter: “Is there a reason why you launched the training? Is it something that is really needed in the community?”
Margaret Nicholas – Executive Director, NCFC: “Well I mean to answer that question very quickly I will just say parenting as I said before is very complex, it’s difficult and parenting doesn’t come with a guide, it’s hard. When we look across our society we can see all the difficulties that we have so if we don’t help and support our parents to rear their children we will continue to have a lot of the problems that we are seeing here today.”
At the end of the session, the NCFC is hopeful that parent educators will involve young parents and parents of all ages in the training sessions they will hold across the country. Participating groups in today’s training included: the Youth Enhancement Services, the Child Development Foundation and churches. The NCFC indicated that there will be a monitoring and evaluation tool to ensure that the right people are targeted for the education assemblies.