Thu | Mar 21, 2019

D&G Foundation boosts Maverley Parenting Workshop

Published:Friday | February 22, 2019 | 12:06 AM

At 27 years old, single parent Sydonie Thomas wants to be a better mother. Every Monday and Wednesday evening, she sets all aside and dedicates three hours to learning how to do so at the Maverley Parenting Workshop (MPW) in northwest St Andrew.

“I recently started attending the workshops, and it has been great so far. I am learning parenting tips such as how to take care of my children at home and how to keep them safe when we are travelling on the road,” Thomas said.

“I am also excited to learn more skills on how to be employable, since I am not working right now,” she added. “I am grateful for this group because I will become a better person by supporting my children in the way they deserve.”

This initiative is driven by the Maverley Progressive Parenting Group (MPPG) to promote positive parenting styles. The community group provides residents with essential parenting tools through a series of workshops in collaboration with the National Parenting Support Commission and the Social Development Commission.

Since attending these sessions, parents have begun communicating better with their children. With the group’s support, children are receiving numerous scholarships and grants to further their education.

The workshop assists 25 ­mothers each week through mentorship programmes and by providing educational and career opportunities that will help them take better care for their children, said Barbara Jeffrey-Daley, vice-president of the MPPG.

Bolstering their efforts is the Desnoes and Geddes (D&G) Foundation, through a $100,000 donation as part of its ‘100 For A Century’ centennial celebrations campaign. Through a partnership with The Gleaner, the MPW was among 56 community organisations selected to receive a share of $5.6 million in the initiative.

“The mantra of the Desnoes and Geddes Foundation is ‘impacting lives, enriching communities’, and we believe that the Maverley Parenting Workshop is achieving that,” Dianne Ashton-Smith, board member of the D&G Foundation, told The Gleaner. “Families are at the heart of a community, so by empowering parents with the skill sets they need to properly care for their children, the neighbourhood will become a better space for nurturing and development.”

Living by their motto ‘My child is yours and your child is mine, treat each child as mine,’ the MPPG ­promotes community development through family ­empowerment. The donation will advance the efforts of the ­workshop by providing transportation for facilitators, purchasing learning tools, and providing refreshments.

“We are grateful for this gift from the D&G Foundation because it will allow us to better serve ­parents and children in the community. We look forward to an enhanced ­workshop experience and more teaching opportunities as we expand our reach in the ­community and support more parents,” Jeffrey-Daley said.