Parenting program promotes the positives

Benefits of specialized program can be dramatic and long lasting

  • Jul. 18, 2013 6:00 p.m.

The Triple P – Positive Parenting Program is one of the world’s most effective parenting programs.

It is one of only a few based on evidence from ongoing scientific research. Developed by clinical psychologist Professor Matt Sanders and his colleagues at Australia’s University of Queensland, Triple P has been shown to work with hundreds of thousands of families through ongoing research over 30 years. More than 250 international trials, studies and published papers have shown it works across cultures, socio-economic groups and in many different family structures.

Triple P is designed to give parents the skills they need to raise confident, healthy children and teenagers and to build stronger family relationships. Triple P doesn’t tell people how to parent. Rather, it gives parents simple and practical strategies they can adapt to suit their own values, beliefs and needs. The benefits can be dramatic and long-lasting.

“Children who grow up with positive parenting are more likely to develop the skills they need to do well at school, build friendships, and feel good about themselves,” says Professor Sanders.

“They are also much less likely to develop behaviourial or emotional problems when they get older. Similarly, parents who use positive parenting skills feel more confident and competent about managing day-to-day family life. They are also less stressed, less depressed and have less conflict with their partners over parenting issues.”

Triple P is distinctive in that it is not a ‘one-size-fits-all’ course.  Rather, it is a system that offers increasing levels of support to meet parents’ different needs.   Parents can choose anything from one-off public seminars or self-help books and DVDs to more intensive group courses or individual counseling sessions. Triple P is now also available online, adding further flexibility and convenience for parents.

“Some parents may just need a light-touch of Triple P, a few ideas to help them set up a better bedtime routine or manage occasional disobedience,” says Professor Sanders. “But others may be in crisis and need greater support. So Triple P is based on the idea that we give parents just the right amount of help they need – enough, but not too much.”

Triple P has also been designed as a population-based health approach to parenting – typically implemented by government bodies or NGOs (non-government organizations) across regions or countries with the aim of reaching as many people as possible. It is often delivered through health, families or education departments.

Practitioners come from a range of professions and include doctors, nurses, psychologists, counsellors, teachers, teacher’s aides, police officers, clergy, social workers and health support workers. The concept, once again, is to provide easy access, support and choice for parents.

“Parenting is the most difficult job any of us will ever do in our lives, but it’s also the one we’re least prepared for,” says Professor Sanders.

“By making parenting information more widely available we’re increasing the likelihood that parents will accept or seek out help.  Offering Triple P is like immunizing the community. You prepare parents, make families healthier and prevent problems before they happen. ”

Triple P is now used in more than 20 countries including the USA, England, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Belgium, Japan, Iran, Hong Kong, Singapore, the Netherlands, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Germany, Curacao, Switzerland, Austria, Romania and Sweden. It has been translated into 17 languages to meet specific country requirements.

Triple P has won numerous international awards, including the Australian Heads of Government National Violence Prevention Award and Professor Sanders has been a consultant to the World Health Organization and the Council of Europe and to governments in countries including the UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Switzerland, Japan and Iran.

A number of specialist Triple P programs have also been developed. These include Stepping Stones Triple P (for parents of children with a disability), Family Transitions Triple P (for parents going through divorce or separation), Lifestyle Triple P (preventing obesity in children) and Indigenous Triple P (for Indigenous families).

For more information, phone  LaRee Russell at 604-796-0313 or email familyplace1@agassizcs.ca.

 

 

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