We all need a little support sometimes to navigate family life and parenting. Our Family Support worker is here to assist families through the additional challenges COVID-19 can bring. We chat to Joan about how she can help during this time and beyond.
- As a Family Support worker, what do you do?
I provide parenting support to new and existing clients across Carrington Health and healthAbility. I do this with parents individually or through groups and seminars that I run. I can assist families with managing a range of issues including:
- Bedtime problems
- Mealtime difficulties
- Children not following instructions
- Aggression towards parents, siblings and others
- Developing a child’s emotional intelligence
- Managing a child’s anxiety.
1. How are you able to support families during COVID-19?
I am now providing the Family Support Service via telehealth (phone or video calling) instead of the usual face to face consultations. I am also planning to provide my upcoming parenting seminars as online webinars (which is both exciting and scary!). I think it’s really important that families know that parenting support is available to help them feel more confident throughout this period and beyond.
2. What do you enjoy most about your work?
I really enjoy what I do but I would have to say hearing about the positive changes families make in their lives – parents and children enjoying each other more; parents feeling more confident and empowered in raising their children. Happy families in happy homes.
3. What do you get asked about the most by parents?
Parents ask me lots of questions, which I love. I would have to say that the question I get asked the most by parents would be “How do I get my child to listen to me?” There really is no short answer to this but my tip would be to give children effective instructions. There are effective ways and not so effective ways for parents to give instructions. If an instruction is given well, it will increase the likelihood of it being followed. Giving good instructions is a skill that can be learnt. It is a skill worth learning given how many instructions parents give each day (estimated the average parent gives 60 instructions a day)!
4. What’s one piece of advice you would give parents during COVID-19?
Trust in yourself and listen to your instincts. If you feel that your family’s situation is becoming unmanageable and you would benefit from some guidance and support, seek assistance as early as possible; don’t wait for things to get really bad. I am here to help.