Emotional Resilience for Parents and Carers
We want you to know you are not alone, and we have designed this page with you in mind. This page is updated weekly to include relevant content to help you and your child/ren. Please visit the useful contacts area for numbers to call or forums to connect with.
The content on this page has been collated by a team of professionals working across partner organisations. These include HeadStart Kernow, Your Way and Young People Cornwall. These sites contain further resources.
The content on this page is updated weekly. This is to ensure you are getting the best information and support we and our partners can provide. Please save it and check back weekly.
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Together for Families has released its very own Parenting Podcast. This is packed full ofinformaiton for parents/carers and young people
- You can find our podcasts on all major podcast platforms, including Spotify.
Ideas for family fun
Our libraries in Cornwall have reopened, for collection and drop off of books only. Only one adult may return books, but you can have fun at home browsing and reading whatever they hold in stock! View the Library video and read below for the summer reading challenge.
With many restrictions having eased enough to allow us to visit the beaches and parks, please remember to stay at a 2m distance wherever possible and 1m+, if not. Getting outside is good for establishing sleep patterns.
Emerging from Lockdown - the Courage to go outside!
I know that for many of us the thought of going outside may be causing some anxiety and stress. This follows months spent indoors shielded and detached from the outside world.
The focus of this update is how to draw on our own internal resources such as self-esteem and the support of our friends and families. This will enable us to build the confidence and courage to go back outside.
Outlined below are some top tips, and ideas on activities you can do individually and as a family or bubble. This is to begin rebuilding your confidence. It will enable you to start taking some small steps to explore your immediate outdoor environment. There is a view to going on adventures further afield.
To help we’ll begin by looking at self-esteem, and why it is important.
What is Self-esteem:
Self-esteem is about liking yourself and who you are. Its having the confidence to believe in yourself and know what you do well at.
For children, self-esteem comes from:
- knowing that they’re loved and that they belong to a family and a community that values them
- spending quality time with their families
- being encouraged to try new things, finding things they’re good at and being praised for things that are important to them
Relationships, connections, belonging and your child’s self-esteem
Being connected to other people who care about her is good for your child’s self-esteem. It gives her a stronger sense of her place in your immediate and extended family. And being connected to friends and people in the community helps your child learn how to relate to others and can boost her confidence.
Here are some ideas for nurturing your child’s self-esteem through relationships:
- Strengthen your child’s sense of his family, culture and community. For example:
- show your child family photos and share family stories
- take part in community or cultural events like religious festivals
- encourage your child join a local sporting club or interest group, or join as a family
- Encourage your child to value being part of your family. One way to do this is by involving your child in chores. When everyone contributes to the smooth running of the household, you all feel important and valued.
- Make your child’s friends welcome and get to know them. Encourage your child to have friends over to your house, and make time for your child to go to their houses.
Achievements, challenges and your child’s self-esteem
Success and achievements can help your child feel good about himself. But your child can also build self-esteem doing things he doesn’t always enjoy or succeed at. You can still praise his effort and determination – and remind him that these will help him succeed in other areas, or next time.
There are lots of ways to help your child succeed, achieve and cope well with failure:
- When your child has a problem, encourage her to think calmly, listen to other people’s points of view and come up with possible solutions to try. This builds important life skills.
- Help your child learn new things and achieve goals. When your child is younger, this might mean praising and encouraging him when he learns something new, like riding a bike. When he’s older, it might be taking him to sport and helping him practise.
- Celebrate big and small achievements and successes. And remember to praise your child’s effort, not just her results. For example, ‘You tried that puzzle piece in lots of different spots and you finally got it right. Well done!’.
- Keep special reminders of your child’s successes and progress. You can go through them with your child and talk about your special memories, and the things he has achieved.
- Teach your child that failing is a part of learning. For example, if she keeps missing the ball when she’s learning to catch, say ‘You’re getting closer each time. I can see how hard you’re trying to catch it’.
- Teach your child to treat himself kindly when he does fail. You could be a role model here. For example, ‘I tried a new recipe, and the cake looks a bit funny. But that’s OK. It smells delicious’.
This video offers advice about building self esteem.
10 ideas for family fun
3. Spend the evening doing puzzles. Jigsaw puzzles, mind-benders, puzzle type games—put your heads together and work to find solutions.
4. Cook together. No matter the age difference, everyone can pitch in to make dinner. Whether it is breakfast for dinner, make-you-own pizzas, or grilling hamburgers, the experience of doing it together can be better than the actual food.
5. Read books aloud as a family. It is easy to get in the habit of reading aloud during “school time” but let’s not leave dad out of the fun! An evening read aloud time gives us a chance to connect and talk. (And if you need some ideas, just keep reading this list!)
Make a time capsule
These are endlessly fascinating – capture your moment in time, then catch up with it a number of years later (or not at all, leaving it for future generations to find).
You need an airtight box, but other than that feel free to add in whatever modern day knickknacks you feel best summarise life in 2018.
Learn how to juggle
Asides from being great fun, fantastic exercise (mentally and physically), juggling can become a joint family hobby.
Take it slowly to begin with to master the rudiments, but from there you can double-up into a juggling act in no time. Research shows juggling can also improve your brain power – again, fantastic news for kids.
So, when the Covid19 situation came about and I received a letter stating I was highly vulnerable, I was more than a little annoyed. Had a not spent the last year doing everything in my power to be anything but vulnerable? But as a partner and parent it was, of course, sensible and responsible for me to follow the guidelines and keep myself and my family as safe as possible
Advice and Guidance
Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families
Coronavirus explained to children
Save the Children
Families Under Pressure
- Families Under Pressure is a series of twelve short films. These offer parenting tips featuring the recognisable voices of a host of well-known parents. The tips are based on decades of research from the UK’s leading experts. They are rooted in the experience of NHS teams working with families and feedback from parents. The films are available free on a dedicated website. Informative resources are also available.
- Support for parents/children
- 6 ways parents can support their kids through the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak
Young Minds support for parents/helpline
HeadStart Community wellbeing for young people
HeadStart is offering a online/telephone well-being service. This is for young people aged 10-16 years who are struggling with their emotional health during the COVID 19 crisis.
Call the Parents Helpline
Call us for free Mon-Fri from 9.30am to 4pm – available in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
0808 802 5544
Emotion Coaching Pilot
Cornwall Council's Educational Psychology team has created a pilot of Emotion Coaching (EC) sessions. These draw on neuropsychology and attachment theory. They focus on developing and maintaining relationships with children and young people. This is to support their social, emotional and mental health as well as their learning.
You can also read the EC GDPR statement.
Counselling for Social Change
This usually low-cost counselling service is offering free 30 minute drop-in sessions. These are online or via telephone with trained counsellors.
Calls may be recorded for monitoring or training purposes.
Man Down Cornwall
British Psychology Society resouces
Psychologists from the British Psychological Society have produced guidance for key workers and their children. This looks at navigating the emotional effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Young Minds Parents' Lounge
What is the Parents' Lounge? Helpline experts give their advice and tips on a range of topics chosen by parents. These cover everything from how to have difficult conversations with your child, to managing anxiety in children.
New Cornish mental health support line launches
A new mental health support phone line for our residents has been launched by Cornwall Partnership Foundation Trust. This gives anyone access to mental health advice from a professional. The service is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The contact number is 0800 038 5300.
WellRead is a chat bot activity designed to help parents boost their children's emotional wellbeing. It features a combination of storytelling and targeted conversations. The WellRead website contains a curated collection of short stories for parents to read to their child. Each story is accompanied with a series of questions. Parents can ask these to spark conversations with their child about a range of wellbeing topics. The stories and questions you will find in WellRead have been selected by teams of experts. This means parents can relax and enjoy some quality time with their child. They should feel reassured that they're also caring for their emotional well-being. It’s free to join, simply create an account on the Wellread website
Stonewall’s domestic violence page contains resources and information for people in the LGBTQ+ community. This includes information about housing support.
ManKind's Help for male victims provides training, advice and support to professionals and victims.
Respect’s Men’s Advice Line takes calls from men, and their families and friends and practitioners.