Mental Health Awareness Week culminates with National Children’s Day on 16th May 2021, when the themes of nature and the environment continue to feature.
At HSRBSC we put children’s needs at the centre of all the support we offer to families and are very aware that the wellbeing of parents directly impacts on the wellbeing of their children.
Through regular contact with home visiting volunteers or family support groups, offering a listening ear, information, advice and peer support, we do our best to help parents to find positive ways to benefit the whole family and improve outcomes for their children.
With funding from Herts Community Foundation, we are currently running a six-week course of weekly wellbeing sessions which have been designed specifically for Home-Start families by Hands On Mindfulness. So far, the feedback from parents has been very positive and we look forward to evaluating the results of the course and reviewing the impact of a mindful approach on family life.
Jennie, our trainer, focuses a lot on the natural environment during her sessions and she has this to say:
“Over the last year, we have sought out nature and fresh air as a way to manage stress and promote wellbeing. We know deep down that nature makes us feel good.
I wondered why, so I made a list of the reasons why my child and I love being in nature:
- happy memories,
- fun exercise,
- vitamin D,
- a sense of connecting to something bigger than ourselves,
- a break from problems,
- the sharing of appreciation with each other,
- the stories that our landscape tells us.
No wonder it makes us feel wonderful!
What is your nature story? “
Learning through play and enjoying the outdoors has been an ongoing theme at our family support groups over the past year.
We have tried to find activities to engage and encourage children to enjoy nature and to use natural or recycled products for our craft projects. This week in particular, as we enjoy the Spring sunshine and in preparation for National Children’s Day, the children have been decorating pots and planting sunflower seeds. They have taken them home so will be able to water them and watch them grow over the coming weeks.