BASSETERRE, St. Kitts, 15th May 2013: The Ministry of Community Development Culture & Gender Affairs continue to address the needs of children and family with the implementation of a Parenting Program that has stretched across four different communities. The sessions will be held in four communities, mainly, Basseterre, Old Road, Sandy Point and Saddlers. The objective of this program is to promote the development of stronger, more encouraging families, through education and support. Parents will develop and practice positive discipline techniques, learn age-appropriate child development skills, and receive support in increasing positive play and interaction with their children.
This parenting program is one of many programs of the Child Development Project, which includes training of teachers, probation officers, counsellors, judiciary, review of the foster care system and implementation and completion of the New Horizon Rehabilitation Center. The Government of St. Kitts & Nevis and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) has made it possible for these activities and projects to be completed.
The Parenting Program is the most recent activity that has embraced the partnership of community organizations to promote this needed intervention to assist parents. The Anglican Church’s Mother’s Union and the Methodist Church have trained a cadre of facilitators for their parenting program and have now partnered with the Department of Probation & Child Protection Services in their effort to strengthen families.
The broad topics that will be covered are “Parenting skills/abuse and neglect prevention, Family relationship, Age appropriate discipline, Life skills and decision making skills, Child development and Managing stress” and other topics that will address the challenges of child-rearing.
The long-term goal of the Department is to implement a National Parenting Program network, provide year-round availability of parenting sessions in various communities, strengthen families and communities to develop parenting partnership and strengthen partnership between the Ministry and families and communities.
The Ministry will continue to ‘make these the best times to be a child’ by strengthening families and building communities.