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In December 2010, CES established the Supporting Parents in their Parenting Role Special Interest Group:
- To create a unique space for developing thinking around issues relevant to parents in their parenting role and children and young people’s wellbeing;
- To build bridges between people, groups and agencies and add value to existing work and networks;
- To develop a strategy that ensures Ireland is a place where parenting is highly valued and supported.
The Special Interest Group officially became The Parenting Network in December 2015. Membership of The Parenting Network Steering Group currently includes agency Directors or CEOs, funders and public officials, professional bodies and practitioners engaged in direct work with parents, academics and professional researchers with an interest in parenting.
Parenting Network Role
The Parenting Network aims to influence policy and practice in supporting parents so that the island of Ireland will actively value and support parents in their parenting role to achieve better outcomes for children, parents and families. The Network has produced a Position Paper outlining their views on why effective parenting is important and how a strategic plan could enable Ireland and Northern Ireland to become leaders in valuing and supporting parents in their parenting role. They have also developed a National Parenting Action Plan which sets out proposals for the delivery of objectives and content of the Department of Children and Youth Affairs High Level Policy Statement on Parenting and Family Support.
The Network has organised two events to date:
- Towards a Parenting Strategy – an All Island Symposium held in July 2013, attended by over 150 policy-makers, practitioners and researchers in services for children and families. Video of the presentations here
- Supporting Parents: Sharing good practice, models and approaches held in February 2015. This provided an opportunity for 178 attendees, working in or with an interest in services for parents, children and families, across the public and voluntary sectors, to share good practice models and approaches in supporting parents throughout the island of Ireland.