Forty-seven graduates on Saturday received their certificates after completing a 15-week programme on parenting.
Members from communities in and around Port-of-Spain, including Leau Place, Mango Rose, Rose Hill, Clifton Hill, Jackson Place, were encouraged to join the Parenting Education Programme 2017, which was held by Families in Action in conjunction with the Ministry of National Security’s Citizens Security Programme.
At the graduation ceremony at the Servol Ltd Gerry Pantin Building, Pembroke Street, Port-of-Spain, Families in Action CEO Dionne Guischard told parents the programme was designed to equip them to develop the skills they already had.
“We have tried to equip you through our programme ... to be a good parent, a parent who tries their best and who seek support when necessary, to raise children who would add value to Trinidad and Tobago.”
However she said the purpose of the entire programme was to encourage parents and communities to be part of Development of Parent Support Groups in their areas as it would help them deal with the challenges of parenthood.
One graduate, Suzan Dhany, from Las Lomas, told Newsday she was an early childhood care and education teacher and had been in the profession for the past 25 years. She took the course to refresh her training and enhance her skill in dealing with youngsters.
She said learning the signs of an abused child intrigued her as, unfortunately, children were being abused more often over the years. She said she also appreciated the “sense of togetherness” among the participants, and the pleasant memories of “back-a-day” some of the sessions induced.
Another graduate, Fabayo Courtney Danglade from Maraval, said her daughter was one year and eight months old, so anything to do with parenting was important for her to learn. And the fact that the programme was free of charge also helped in her decision to join.
She said although there were many interesting and significant points made, three points affected her personally - the need to put God first, having patience, and the idea that families should have fun together.
“I don’t know how to explain it. All I know is that this programme did something for me that I didn’t think it would have done. It opened my mind and gave me positive ideas I didn’t think I had in me.”
Danglade said she wanted to let people know how important the programme was as she believed it could not only revive family life, but community life as well.