The service is calling on parents who think they could benefit from extra advice or help about the challenges of raising children to contact them or come along to an upcoming event.
More than 200 families recently attended a series of three fun days aimed at bringing families together, and giving parents and other people who care for children a chance to find out about the services available and where they can access support.
The family support team can help families with issues such as:
- Parent groups
- Child behaviour
- Children’s routines e.g. eating, sleeping
- Support with strengthening relationships within the family
- Support for families through working closely with other agencies
A member of the team, Danny Creek, said: “Families today are under incredible pressure from day to day challenges and can put great strain on relationships which of course can affect children.
“The Council’s family support team can give practical advice and offer support about a range of issues, for example if a parent is concerned about a child having tantrums or a family is struggling to set sleeping patterns or eating routines, we can step in to help. We can also help with courses and qualifications so a parent can get back to work after maybe taking time off to raise their family.
“The team works with groups of parents or, when needed, one-to-one sessions can be organised.”
Councillor Liz Saville Roberts, Gwynedd Council’s Education Portfolio Leader, said: “People may not realise that this help is available – I would urge anyone who thinks that extra support could help their family or improve their children’s behaviour to contact the Family Support Team.
“As a Council we strongly believe in identifying problems early and wherever possible giving guidance and aid to prevent situations from escalating. Being a parent can be one of the most difficult jobs and the Council’s aim, through a number of schemes and initiatives, is to give a helping hand so that families can look after themselves.
“Parents may feel too shy to volunteer or not want people to think they can't cope. But we all know that being a parent is extremely challenging, and this support will boost confidence as well as being fun.”
The three fun days provided a great opportunity for families to get together and learn about the opportunities on offer. The first fun day in Maesgeirchen, Bangor attracted approximately 40 families who enjoyed the family orientated activities such as bouncy castles and face-painting, with Peppa Pig and Fireman Sam also making an appearance. Feedback from both parents and children was very positive.
The second fun day took place at Plas Silyn Leisure Centre in Penygroes. Again it was a great success with 70 families turning up to join in the fun.
The third fun day was held at the Arfon Leisure Centre in Caernarfon. A massive 90 families turned up to enjoy such activities as the inflatable obstacle course, an array of fun arts and crafts and also a family portrait with a professional photographer. Peppa Pig and Fireman Sam again kept the children entertained.
The Family Support Team’s work is linked to the Incredible Years Programme, which runs through Gwynedd schools. Sessions are also held specifically for fathers with the Council’s Fathers Support Worker.
Upcoming events include:
Incredible Years course for Fathers at Plas Menai, Felinheli – 19 February
Cookery courses for parents – 20 February (fathers) & 22 February
More events will be publicised in the local press and at community centres.
For more information about parenting classes, support groups or one-to-one help contact Gwynedd Council’s Family Support Team on 01286 678824 or email CeriWynJones3@gwynedd.gov.uk