The content that makes up these classes was reviewed by groups of first-time expectant parents and a number of prenatal and parenting educators. All of them agreed - this is a wonderful, comprehensive resource for expectant parents!
For these expectant and new parents, it made a significant difference as to their readiness and confidence as they moved through their pregnancy, delivered their baby and ultimately prepared for the most important job they would ever have - becoming parents. The following testimonials come from those who participated:
"I am a Child and Family Therapist and I worked as a Parent Educator in the Toronto pilot of The Parenting Partnership. It was a great experience working with families and I appreciated being a part of a such a comprehensive and extensive parenting program. The benefits that I saw for new families was echoed by the families themselves, and it was very refreshing to be a part of such a unique program. I particularly enjoyed the aspects of the program designed to include fathers in the parenting role, as partners not helpers! The fathers who came to the group enjoyed the interactions and discussions and were able to be quite honest with their partners about their own fears and concerns. This brought the couples closer together as evidenced by the strength in their relationships after birth at a time when I often see couples struggling to stay connected. The program is unique because it focuses on more than labour and delivery, it looks at L&D, and also the emotional, financial and relationship changes of having a child. It supports families from prenatal to well after birth and the connection that the group builds with each other makes the supportive environment self sustaining. Our group continues to stay in touch with each other to this day, almost 3 years later!! The combined impact of the internet blog and resource and the face to face components allow families to work at their own pace, and our families clearly enjoyed being in touch via the blog outside of the face to face sessions. Many of our families asked about future programs for friends and families that had become pregnant. I hope this program continues to be offered for free in the community. If all families had these kinds of comprehensive programs available to them, I could envision a huge reduction in the mental and emotional challenges that accompany childbirth."
Child and Family Therapist
Parent Educator—The Parenting Partnership
"Most parents appreciate that raising their children is the most important job they will ever undertake. Most parents are also uncertain and unsure about what their young children need and when they need it. Good parents are not simply born on the day their child arrives. The knowledge that parents need to support the physical, emotional, and intellectual development of their children is not inherited. To believe otherwise is simply foolish. Fortunately, the very best knowledge about child development and the vital roles of mothers and fathers in that development has been consolidated and now forms the foundation of the exciting new Parenting Partnership Program. Looking back, I wish I had been able to count on TPP when my two children were growing up. The good news is that my grandchildren can benefit from the full range of TPP resources that my son and daughter can call upon as they grow into their new roles as parents."
Advisor to The Parenting Partnership and Lawson Foundation
Former Executive Director of Programs and Research for the Vanier Institute of the Family
"Thank you so much for all the help you gave us. First of all, we really enjoyed your classes and really learned a lot – you’re a great teacher. Most of all, thank you so much for being a fantastic doula – your support and coaching was invaluable – you really made this the greatest experience of our lives. And finally, thanks for all your calming support, kind words and help after Gio’s birth. We really appreciated it!"
—Charlene and Adam
"The Parenting Partnership is meeting a very important need in our communities. It is clear that new parents are looking for credible support and practical information about raising their children. And it is important to get that information to them early on because that is when they are most ready to receive it. But I believe the most important piece of this program is the support to the couple relationship. Encouraging and strengthening the parenting team will make a huge difference in the long run for the couple, for their parenting, and for their children."
Parent Educator—The Parenting Partnership and Welcome to Parenting Class Series
Professional with LAMP Early Years Services
"The Peterborough Family Resource Centre has been running The Parenting Partnership groups for two and a half years. As a staff member facilitating the program I like the multi-faceted aspects of it that give parents information about pre-natal and labour education, preparing for the baby, post partum support, transitioning from a couple to parents as well as, infant and toddler development.
Due to the length of the program I have the opportunity to develop trusting relationships with families. Building trust allows me to really get to know them and support them in their parenting journey. In the four groups that I have been part of, I have seen friendships grow between families and a lot of learning is taking place through this peer support piece. The families also benefit from having educators with diverse backgrounds …re: Health Educator and Parent Educator. I look forward to continue to offer these programs in our community."
Certified Canadian Family Educator
Peterborough Family Resource Centre
"National and international research are clear – parents are the most important influence on a child’s development. The Parenting Partnership (TPP) is truly an innovative parenting program that puts this research into practice. TPP provides parents with support, knowledge and preparation about pregnancy, childbirth and early child development and supports them in their experience of becoming parents. TPP is not only about valuing our children and giving them the best possible start in life, it is also about cherishing and supporting their parents."
—Carol Matusicky, PhD
Consultant; Former Executive Director, BC Council for Families; Chair, BC
Parenting Vision Working Group
"The Parenting Partnership is a wonderful program where our participants felt supported during the prenatal period and also after the birth of their baby. The combination of online and face to face allowed them to learn in the comfort of their own home while at the same time meet other parents. The participants truly enjoyed the program in that it provided a practical approach to parenting, increased their confidence as a parent and provided opportunities to share their joys and frustrations.
As an Educator, it was extremely rewarding to see how our participants evolved into confident parents at the end of the program!"
Thunder Bay District Health Unit