In Vienna on Monday November 23rd I gave a talk on ‘Parenting education and support, keys to family well-being’ at a meeting of the Vienna Committee of NGOs on the Family. It was well received – yeah! – and will be included in the next quarterly edition of Families International, the Committee newsletter. The full text of the speech is posted under the header ‘Learn’ in the section ‘In The News.’ In my remarks I suggested:
…an international essay contest on the question: “How would you, as a philanthropist, invest $10 million to better prepare, educate and support parents for their most important job: raising children?” and said that if I were entering that contest today I would call for three things:
- a social marketing campaign over five or ten years to create a positive perception of parenting services as essential for everyone raising children,
- development of behavioral economics strategies through health care, insurance and tax policy that would, first, encourage parents to access the services they need, when and where they need them, and would, second, give the many excellent parents program providers appropriate pay for their expertise and time,
- and, in coordination with the above two initiatives, a sequence of meetings, at local, national, regional and international levels, to consider principles, practices and policies that will improve the lives of parents and in so doing enhance the health, well-being and success of our children….
It was most exciting to get a favorable response to these suggestions! I hope that the Vienna Committee, along with member agencies, including the International Federation for Parent Education (www.fipe-ifpe.fr) , and other national organizations such as NPEN, the U.S. National Parenting Education Network (www.npen.org), will over the next five years leading up to the 20th anniversary of the International Year of the Family in 2014, commit to developing and addressing a substantial agenda of activities to serve our common mission. There is certainly plenty of work for all of us!