Monday 13th May 2019
From the 13th to the 19th of May, special events will be taking place across Ireland as part of the Tusla National Child and Family Support Week. The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr Katherine Zappone, welcomed this initiative to highlight the variety of accessible and friendly supports provided by Tusla and its partners to parents at all stages of their children’s development.
The events aim to increase awareness of the wide range of family supports available for parents, children, young people and communities across Ireland. Events include parenting talks, workshops, coffee mornings, film screenings, teddy bears’ picnics and much more. Details of all events are available here.
Supports funded by Tusla include the Parenting24seven.ie website which contains tips on what works best for children and families at different stages of childhood, a wide range of services in family resource centres, parenting classes, Creative Community Alternatives and Meitheal, an inclusive, team-based approach to identifying and meeting children’s needs. Other parenting supports include parent, baby and toddler groups, breastfeeding support groups and the HSE’s mychild.ie website.
Minister Zappone stated: “Families play a critical role in teaching, supporting and nurturing children. We must ensure that all parents can access high quality supports at different stages in their child’s life.”
A Parenting Support Policy Unit has been established by the Department of Children and Youth Affairs to lead out on the work of co-ordinating policy direction and activity relating to parenting support. A recent survey of parents carried out on behalf of the Department found that seven out of ten parents in Ireland felt supported by family and friends. Finances, sleep and work/family life balance were the top three challenges identified by parents.
Minister Zappone stated “It is important that all parents have access to high quality supports when they need them. As part of First 5, the Whole-of-Government Strategy for Babies, Young Children and their Families, my department will lead the development of a national model of parenting supports to meet the needs of parents in Ireland and their children”.