Thursday, August 22, 2013

It Takes a Two Generation Approach

Changing the world can be done in baby steps:

One community - One family at a time

Young child with Dad, loving care
I was in good arms with my Dad

The Bellingham Herald, my local town's newspaper ran the front page headline: "Cost Cutter closure to leave retail hole at Sunset Square". It's affiliate Facebook page, asked the question: "What would you like to see replace this space?" Many answers were obvious choices like Safeway or Trader Joe's (other food options).

 Papa Green Bean responded...
  "Let's open a Parent-Child  Education Center".

The AVANCE Parent-Child Education Program states it's mission (and my thoughts) eloquently...

 "The key to healthy early childhood development is a two-generation approach that capitalizes on parents’ inner strength and innate love for their children to help them become the best teachers and stewards of their children’s growth and success. Parental education alone is not enough; an effective intervention must build parents’ resilience, interpersonal connections, networks, and access to education, jobs and other opportunities. Effective parental engagement empowers parents to become advocates for their children and families."

  Other successful programs

 These organizations also take the two-generation approach:

  • INPEACE, a Hawaiian non-profit, that offers "Keiki Steps" for parents of children 0 - 5.

Often, these organizations arose to fight back against a poverty riddled community and the vicious cycle within. My view is that parents of all economic levels need help with early childhood development and education. The latent powers innately within each parent, normally, naturally arise
with the birth of their child. However, there are many cases where the mother and/or father needs help to get on the healthy path to parenting. Or, at least, could benefit with some positive coaching.

One more success story:

penguins showing parental togetherness
Families dance together
all over the world with a loving attitude!

Mercy College has recently partnered with the Bronx borough, and developed The Bronx Parent Center, a paradigm for the rest of New York City, to help train parents for their crucial role in the education of their children. Alfred S. Posamentier, Dean - School of Education, at Mercy College says the parent center initiative provides (among other services) activities for parents to make them more aware of their educational role at home. The Mercy College faculty have developed this center at the Bronx campus completely 'pro bono' showing true commitment and dedication. Bravo! 

Papa Green Bean's conclusion:     

 A Parent-Child Education Center opened in a vacant retail space, operated by education specialists, and modeled after other proven initiatives is our collective future. The two-generation approach to helping families raise their loved one's is the most efficient method to creating a better world for the many generations to come.

All the best, Papa Green Bean