In QEC’s playroom, Bianca helps parents reconnect with their child and the community. Everyone learns by watching what others do. So in the playroom, parents see how we use different play activities to understand our children and how to talk and interact with them in positive ways. Parents come to me frustrated with their children and tell me nothing is working. Play helps parents move away from focusing on what’s not been working. It’s then we can see the opportunities we have and enjoy getting creative with our child. To see this I only have to bring out the play dough or get everyone drawing. Mum or dad’s hands soon get busy, and they start enjoying it too.
It’s challenging to be a parent. You might be adapting to a new country, or as a couple you have different ideas on setting limits for your children. Other times you just don’t know what your child is trying to tell you. We practice together, watching the child’s actions and responding. Every day I see the improvement in each family and child. Families leave the program well equipped and confident to continue their parenting journey. Many families make changes and start to get life back on track. The connections with each other are growing. For our migrant parents, coming to the playroom for the first time is a huge achievement.
I can picture their journey because I faced similar struggles when I moved to Australia. You want to make changes but don’t know where to go for help. We help with ideas and coaching while respecting other cultures. In the playroom parents meet other parents and soon their social support networks start to grow. They also learn about support services available close to home. It’s really the same for many other families. Parents are often alone at home and it’s not until they’re with other parents in the playroom that they start building a community of support around them.