We have developed a parenting education program to exchange and give advice to other young Vietnamese parents. Due to the ban on gatherings in the country because of COVID, we have adapted the program to offer online sessions. Nolwenn Deschard, our Early Childhood expert, participated in the first session held on Sunday, October 17, with the theme screen management.
- How are the sessions conducted?
Our two social workers, Thao and HoaEach of these groups is made up of 6 to 7 parents. Each meeting deals with a specific topic that is given to the parents before the presentation. The sessions are normally scheduled for 30 minutes, but the parents asked during the first session to have more time to exchange and testify. The sessions now last 45-50 minutes.
Each caseworker has an identical group of parents each week, at the same time on Sundays.
We propose a activity to parents in connection with the theme to bring them to be actors of the problematic. A time to share reflections, of experiences and questions and answers is offered to those who wish to participate.
We also invite parents to share what they have retained of the previous session and explain the difficulties they encountered or the changes they were able to implement at home.
And we systematically ask them if they were able to discuss the previous session with their husbands / wives / parents / neighbors etc.
Then a very simple game is proposed so that parents can learn to reproduce it with their children, without equipment and at home.
Finally, the social worker closes the session by recalling the key messages discussed, and indicates the theme for the next session.
- What was the theme of the first session?
The first theme we addressed was that of screen management, awareness of their effects and how to find an alternative. The various exchanges with parents and the observations of social workers reveal that this is a real subject to be explored with our beneficiaries. Parents are asking for advice on how to avoid screens but don't know how to do otherwise.
- Nolwenn, what is your role in these sessions?
I have prepared these sessions for many months and have been adapted online with the social workers Hoa and Thao. Before each session, we test the session with each other and take turns playing the role of the facilitator and the parents, in order to readjust.
During the sessions, Tai (project manager for early childhood in Vietnam) translates everything that is said into English. I never intervene verbally but I may put comments to help or support an idea of a social worker. Then we exchange after each session to note areas for improvement in the workshop.
- What are the prospects in the coming weeks?
We hope to be able to organize the sessions in face-to-face as soon as possible, but also to have more participants !