Plus One Young Parents and Parents-to-be Programmes
12 March 2019
YC Hertfordshire, Hertfordshire County Council’s youth service, has launched three new Plus One Parenting Programmes for young parents and parents-to-be in Broxbourne, Welwyn Hatfield and East Herts.
The 20-week programme helps them to manage the challenges of being a parent whilst developing valuable skills for their future, such as employability skills. The programme also enables young parents to meet and share experiences with other young parents of a similar age in a safe environment and the opportunity to establish their own peer support network.
Justine Herridge from YC Hertfordshire said: “This is an excellent opportunity for young parents to gain knowledge and develop parenting skills whilst also preparing them for their futures. For this programme we have a mobile crèche service available at the venue so that the parents have the time and space to focus on their own personal development.”
Weekly sessions include interactive workshops, team challenges, and guest speakers. A range of topics are covered including developing parenting and healthy living skills, paediatric first aid, money management, housing advice, increasing self- confidence and maintaining positive emotional wellbeing. In addition, young parents access YC Hertfordshire careers services to explore future education, employment and training opportunities, with the main aim of empowering them to thrive as young parents and start planning for their futures.
So far the groups have successfully completed a paediatric first aid course including how to perform CPR, use a defibrillator and put a person in a recovery position. The Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service also visited to speak about safety in the home and spotting household hazards and risks.
There has been positive engagement from the young people and Kath Weston, a YC Hertfordshire personal adviser working with the Welwyn Hatfield group said: “These young parents and parents-to-be are learning together, especially those who are soon to be parents and want to hear the experiences of others in the group who already have a baby. It’s clear they feel it’s a comfortable and safe environment where they not only make friends but where they can openly talk about the challenges they are experiencing as parents or parents to be and can support each other in addressing the anxieties they may have as well as access the support from YC Hertfordshire.”
The young people have also been enthusiastic about what the programme will offer them:
“I wanted to join the Plus One programme to meet new young parents like me.” - young mother, 17
“I am here to learn something new and to learn about myself.” - young father, 18
Once completed these young people will receive a City & Guilds in Employability.