Prairie Parent Link “Parent N’ Tots” program offered in McLennan and Girouxville

Tom Henihan
Express Staff

Prairie Parent Link Centre offers programming for parents and their children from infancy to five years of age.

Under the auspices of Children’s Resource Council, the Centre provides services in all five areas of children’s development, five pillars that support the healthy development of the child: Parent and caregiver Information, Early Childhood Development, Family Support Services, Information and referrals and Developmental Screening.

Prairie Parent Link “Parents N’ Tots program” alternates every other week between McLennan and Girouxville, at the Archdiocese House in McLennan every second Tuesday from 1 p.m. to 3 pm and at Girouxville community hall every second Wednesday also from 1pm to 3 pm.

“If they want to they can come to the McLennan and Girouxville sessions, which will give me an opportunity to get to know them better personally,” says new program coordinator, Peggy McCarthy.

Parents N’ Tots is a parent/child (ages 0-5) play-based learning group that held its first season in McLennan on Tuesday, September 13.

“It was good, it was my introduction,” says McCarthy, who has extensive experience working with parents and children.
“I have worked with parents and kids pretty much all my life, twenty years with Aboriginal Head Start, on the Peavine Metis Settlement with 3 and 4 year olds. Prior to that, I worked for ten years through the health unit in early intervention.”

Head Start was a centre-based program while Early Intervention was an intense home-based program with children from birth to three and a half years of age with a special needs diagnoses or delayed development.

McCarthy’s role involved working with parents, such as instructing them in ways to keep their child stimulated and organizing referrals to appropriate health specialists.

McCarthy says that she has been on a learning curve recently, becoming familiar with how the agency works and training for the Triple P parenting program, which they are hoping to run in January and February in McLennan offering it to people in the surrounding area.

“It is an eight-week course, with the first 4 weeks being group sessions then we break off and the next 4 weeks are individual sessions,” says McCarthy.
“I will find out more about it when I go to training next week but I assume that we can talk to parents individually about any issues they are dealing with personally.
“It sounds like a very positive program, very encouraging and supportive.”

The next Parent N’ Tots sessions will be held in McLennan, Tuesday October 4 and in Girouxville, Wednesday October 5.

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