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How to start a Parenting Program

Putting the piedes togetherHOW TO START
~~~~~~~~and PROMOTE a



What you will learn:


Starting Your Own Parenting Education Program:

Five Steps

  1. Be ready for the question "Why?"
  2. Choose the right program for your audience—and for you
  3. Determine whose help you need
  4. Develop a support system
  5. Promote your program to parents

Make a Good Impression with the Very First Session

Finding Funds for Your Program

Further Reading


"There is one thing stronger than all the armies of the world:
an idea whose time has come
." -Victor Hugo

The job of parenting is one that is both extremely important and extremely difficult, but for too long our society has treated it as if it were either unimportant or easy, and left parents to fend for themselves.

Today's parents face greater challenges than ever before and are becoming less and less confident in their parenting skills. They may hear from their own parents that they aren't measuring up, yet it's clear that the methods their parents used won't work as effectively in today's world.

So they seek answers through magazine articles and books, actively searching for that magic solution to make them better parents. They jump from one theory to another, but their attempts are met with failure; their family life becomes chaotic because of the inconsistency, and parents are left feeling even more frustrated and inadequate.

Nothing changes, not because they aren't trying, but because change takes time, consistency and commitment. And also because parenting is a job that requires training and support, something they've never had.

As a child and family therapist I developed a strong belief in the importance of parenting education. I realized my efforts to help children would be temporary at best, and that if I wanted to help them over the long term I needed to get parents involved.

When I saw the changes that occurred with more parent involvement, I began using parenting education as a regular component of my counseling. This helped me establish a positive rapport with both parents and the community. As I began offering more and more courses in schools, churches and other community locations I began to realize that parenting education was not just something that could benefit parents whose children were having problems, it was something that could benefit all families. Since that time I've heard from hundreds of leaders who have seen firsthand the power of effective parent education. Today, we see Active Parenting groups offered throughout the United States and in many other parts of the world. It is an idea whose time has come.

This booklet contains information that my staff and I have collected over the years in our work with parents and professionals. Much of what we have learned has come from fellow Active Parenting leaders, and I hope that we will all continue sharing what we learn in our mission to bring parenting education to communities around the world.

-Michael Popkin
Active Parenting Publishers

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