“Education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire”

— William Butler Yeats, Poet and Philosopher

Individual Parenting Consultations

Being a parent is not always easy and, oftentimes, parents need that extra little bit of support and advice to ensure their feelings are being monitored. Sugru aims to afford parents the opportunity to come and meet with Arlene, a child development specialist, about any parental difficulties they may be dealing with, which may be affecting their ability to cope with life’s stressors. Parents can arrange a once-off, drop-in style session to talk about the challenges of raising their children in a confidential and safe place. Consultations can focus on the child’s development (social, emotional, or psychological) as well as external supports or other aspects of the child’s individual needs.

Who are Sugru’s Parenting Consultations for?

SUGRU’s Parenting Consultations are for parents who would benefit from expressing concerns they might be experiencing regarding their children’s or family’s welfare and receiving constructive advice about how to best approach and deal with their specific situation.

What to expect?

During SUGRU’s Parenting Consultations, parents will be invited to an environment that encourages open expression between the parent and Arlene. Throughout the consultation, parents are encouraged to detail whatever troubles they may be privately dealing with and will receive advice on how best to deal with these situations from a child development professional with a firm grounding in psychology.

When is it on?

Parenting Consultations will take place at the SUGRU Centre. Each session lasts one hour. For further information, please contact us with your queries or to register your interest.


Workshops for Parents

An extensive catalogue of training courses and workshops will be available for parents and interested parties to attend at the Sugru centre. These will include lecture materials from Arlene, as well as role plays and shared personal accounts from willing attendees. The aim of these sessions is to educate parents on how they can create a more harmonious home environment for every member of the family, while taking into account that the aim is not to be the “perfect parent”. Despite the fact that each family is individual in their nature, common difficulties do arise and these times often present as tedious, worrisome and lonely for some parents. Arlene strives to create a learning environment whereby common pitfalls are acknowledged and methods of dealing with these stressful situations are taught, such that every parent can be more for their children. Details of the range of workshops that are delivered at Sugru, to meet the identified needs of parents, are identified below.

Communicating with your Child

Being a parent can be the most amazing role you will ever fulfil but can also be a time of frustration, self-doubt and total despair. There are many evidence-based strategies to help establish a more supportive and understanding relationship with your child. In this workshop, Arlene will openly and honestly discuss some of these issues and will introduce and teach positive ways of communicating to create a more harmonious relationship with your child. Topics will include active listening, reflective skills, establishment of boundaries, engagement techniques, and methods of empowerment, to name but a few.

From Baby to Toddler: The Early Years

Life with a toddler can be an adventure of excitement and entertainment, but can often be a challenge to even the most patient and loving of parents. In this workshop, Arlene: – talks frankly about the delights and difficulties of parenting a toddler, – details all developmental milestones of toddler years, – provides positive parenting approaches to deal with temper tantrums and other behavioural difficulties, – discusses sleep, food, temperament, and any other issues of toddlerhood which parents may be keen to have addressed.

Parenting a Teenager

Adolescence is a time when parents watch their child transform into an individual with passions, interests and motivations of their own. It can be a time full of awe and wonder, but can also be fraught with difficulties as all family members adjust to a new set of dynamics. In this workshop, Arlene will discuss and share techniques for dealing with problems of temperament, communication, individuality, and sexuality in an open and supportive environment.


Child Development and Parenting Programme

The growing child develops more rapidly than at any other stage in the span of his/her lifetime. In this workshop, Arlene provides parents with fundamental information about human development from conception to adolescence, with the main focus being on prenatal and postnatal stages of development. Topics covered in this workshop include prenatal development and influences, births and post-natal care, biological and environmental influences, vulnerability and resilience in children, capabilities of the newborn, and sleeping and soothing techniques.

Managing the Family: A Tool for Busy Families

It is not always easy for parents of two or more children to meet the often very different needs of each child in the family. It may seem as though no matter how much you try, you feel guilt about not being “the perfect parent”. In this workshop, Arlene discusses the difficulties involved in attempting to meet the needs of many children, from the perspective of the parent and of each child. Importantly, she presents strategies and techniques which can be effectively implemented in any family unit pertaining to effective time-management and communication with each individual child.

Parenting Through Divorce/Separation

It is commonly known that divorce and/or separation can be especially grievious to all members of a family, and dealing with this can be especially difficult for the parents involved as they deal with their own emotions and remain strong to support their children. In this workshop, Arlene will talk through evidence-based techniques for maintaining the parental role while coping with a divorce/separation in the family. Effective communication strategies with all members if your family will be taught, as well as common difficulties to avoid.

Parenting a Child with Special Needs (Educational and Developmental)

Being the parent of a child with special needs can be a daunting and lonely task, especially while trying to maintain other family relationships and, sometimes, a career too. Being your child’s best advocate is a role that comes with the territory such that your child will benefit the most. This workshop, designed by Arlene, will empower parents to be effective communicators with their child’s school to discuss and agree upon the child’s eligibility for special education. Also emphasized are the stages of planning, decision-making, and monitoring of progress in school. Information and training are provided via presentations, as well as support and idea-sharing via interaction among all participants. Specialized topics for children with special needs will also be covered including strategies to manage problem behaviour and contributing to individualized education programs.

Sugru1Parenting Workshops