Can you describe what you do for Families First and why you do this work?
Roxanne: I am a Parenting Educator at Families First, and I have been doing it for about seven years now. I remember when I first went to a workshop, and I was in the audience. Years later, I had the opportunity to facilitate workshops for Families First.
I do this work because I like to give back. Most of us Parenting Educators are parents ourselves. It’s easier to receive information from somebody who is also experiencing similar situations.
The foundations of communication with your children, discipline, positive support, different children’s learning styles… knowledge in these areas really helps. It’s really good for all parents.
How does it feel to be a part of moments when you know that change is really happening?
Roxanne: To be part of these moments that parents have, when they see things a different way… when they evaluate the way they handle a situation and want to do things better for their children… it can be quite emotional.
And seeing them put all that energy and effort to the emotional well-being of their child, it’s powerful. It really is a wonderful thing to be a part of.
Can you share a story of this type of impact?
Roxanne: At Families First, we talk a lot about communication, especially for children in the early years. Parents can get really frustrated when their children can’t communicate with them. So I remember talking to a mom about different ways to get your children to communicate other than yelling, screaming, temper tantrums, and things like that.
There was a situation where the mom didn’t realize that her child was hungry. And the child really had a bad temper tantrum. So we talked about setting schedules and reading social cues so that both mom and child can communicate better and make things a lot smoother.
At the end, she said she would try to read her child’s communication cues—and give her own cues to her child—so that they can communicate back and forth together.
Do you believe that parenting has the ability to make the difference in a child’s life?
Roxanne: Parenting is a lifelong investment and can make such a difference in the outcome of a child’s life. Helping parents with the skills, the foundations, the steps to empower themselves to help them make decisions on how they want to handle the biggest life investment is a rewarding experience.