Tag

Parenting

Browsing

Siblings bickering and arguing can be frustrating and mentally exhausting for parents. Although disagreements between siblings may drive parents crazy, it teaches our kids how to deal with and resolve conflict at an early age. This will, in turn, help them handle conflicts in relationships outside of their immediate family as they become adults. Nevertheless, when it seems like your children can’t get along even for a minute, then you can try these tips:

Look after each child’s needs

Children feel valued if you make it clear that it’s not okay for younger children to mess up older children’s activities, and vice versa. Also, take time out to bond individually with each child, and, most importantly, try not to compare children with each other.

Praise their good behaviour

Notice and give positive feedback to your kids when they’re well behaved. When you tell children clearly and specifically what they’re doing well, you’re likely to see more of that behaviour.

Show children how to get along

You are your children’s number one role model. Your children will notice if you iron out differences without fighting. If you would like your children to figure things out calmly and respectfully, they have to see you doing this. If you would like them to be ready to apologize to others, they have to see you apologising too.

Coach your children

You are your children’s problem-solving coach. You should teach them the way to handle disagreements and guide them toward skills for managing angry feelings, negotiating, and playing fair. This is much better than having to step in when they’re brewing or even worse, being a referee who breaks up fights.

You can also try these tips whenever they start fighting:

Hold hands

Whenever you notice your kids fighting, call them to sit together and hold hands till they solve their issues. Before you know it, they’ll laugh and forget that they were fighting.

T-shirt co-operation

The idea is that you simply have an extra-large men’s t-shirt that the kids must wear together until they stop bickering. Older kids can even be made to do chores while crammed within the t-shirt together. While the shirt is on, speak to them about how things work better once they agree to work together (trust me, if they need to try to do anything while wearing one shirt, they have no choice but to work together.)

Job bottle

Think of about a dozen chores. Write them on small strips of paper. Laminate them or cover with tape so that it can’t get mangled. Explain to your kids that each time a fight breaks out they all have to pick a job out from the job bottle. They don’t get to choose, they only grab one. When the squabbling starts, just calmly say, “job bottle.”

Hug it out

One time, I made my kids hug and told them they had to continue to hug each other until they stopped being mad at one another. I found them laughing at their situation because they were physically locked together. After that, ‘I love you’ and ‘I’m sorry’ would follow.

Give them a problem to solve together

You can try giving your kids a puzzle to solve together to stop them from arguing. When they finish that, give them a harder one. Solving puzzles together encourages them to get along, rely on each other, and help one another.

Finally, it may help to remember that a certain amount of bickering and fighting is normal and even healthy in your children’s relationships with each other. Try some of these ideas and see if one works for you.

Remember, consistency is key. When you find a solution that works for your kids, continue with it. I’m confident that you’ll see a marked improvement in how your children get along.

Do you have any tips to ensure your kids get along? Feel free to share.

Often times, children (especially the younger ones) may not have the ability to verbalize their feelings. As a parent, it is your duty to observe them carefully for any signs of stress. Stress symptoms may be long or short – it all depends on the severity of the situation.

As a parent, you would have gone through one difficult situation or the other – but when it comes to your kids, you sometimes might not have an idea on how to help them cope with difficult circumstances.

Life will always have its ups and downs and the earlier kids know how to cope in these kinds of situations, the better for them. The first thing to do when something negative happens is to answer their questions – this helps them understand what’s happening and teach them how to cope in the future.

Often times, children (especially the younger ones) may not have the ability to verbalize their feelings. As a parent, it is your duty to observe them carefully for any signs of stress. Stress symptoms may be long or short – it all depends on the severity of the situation.

Stress symptoms may include one or a combination of the following:

  • There may be changes in eating, sleeping, or bathroom habits
  • Children may experience increased separation anxiety
  • They may experience bad dreams
  • Crying spells
  • Kids may become withdrawn
  • Increased aggressive behavior or unnecessary tantrums

How can you help your children cope with stress? Here’s what you can do:

  • Encourage kids to express their feelings. Allow them to express whatever it is they’re experiencing and let them know it is okay to feel the way they do.
  • Ensure that they follow routines as much as possible. In addition, ensure they eat healthy meals and rest adequately.
  • For older kids, allow them read books that’ll teach them about characters in stressful situations – they will learn how to cope.
  • Encourage your kids to exercise. Simple exercises such as dancing, walking and swimming can help reduce the effect of stress.

If a child isn’t adjusted properly and is still showing signs of stress after a long period of time, it is in the best interest of the child that you seek professional advice immediately.

Helping Children Deal with Traumatic Events

In traumatic situations, children often react in different ways, depending on their personality. While some continue as though nothing happened, some may experience sadness or worse still, depression. If your child is experiencing difficulty, it is important that they are provided with the love and stability to help them process and overcome the situation.

Here are some guidelines to help you:

Answer children’s questions

The aftermath of an accident or dramatic incident may leave children with a lot of questions. Just like us, kids also need their feelings acknowledged, as well as an opportunity to talk about their feelings. Also, ensure that your explanation of the event matches the child’s developmental understanding.

Reassure them as much as you can

Physical contact such as holding and hugging not only reassures your little one, it’s also a great way to help your child feel safe. In addition, you can help the child feel better about the situation and provide comfort without giving wrong information or false hopes. For example, saying “I am sure everything is going to be fine” will help to put your child’s mind to rest.

Remain observant

Ensure that you keep a watchful eye on your child even as their thoughts and feelings about the situation evolves. Listen to them, ask questions and continue to reassure them as much as you can. Most importantly, give them the opportunity to express themselves.

Remember that life comes with its challenges and it’s your duty as a parent to teach and show your child(ren) how to go through life by handling these difficult situations positively.

Balancing children and a full-fledged workload is not a walk in the park, especially during this period. It’s okay to occasionally treat yourself now and then to your favorite meal or a movie for your efforts. Most importantly, enjoy the process as you get to spend more time with the people that mean the most to you!

With schools closed around the country and most companies opting for remote work, keeping your kids engaged while you work can be a daunting experience. For many parents, it’s a healthy mix of chaos, family time, stress, fighting, and bargaining with their partner on who will take which shift so the other can get some work done.

Although it won’t be easy in this period, this can also be an amazing time to bond with your kids and get to know them better. Most importantly, go easy on yourself. There’s no doubt this time is impossibly difficult, so doing your best is the best decision for everyone.

Here a few ways to  keep your children engaged while you work from home:

Create a schedule

I know you’re probably tired of hearing this but the truth is that kids do best when they have a structure,  so creating a daily schedule will make it easier for them to stay focused as well as hopefully provide periods of productivity for you too.

Schedule your work-time to align with the activities you plan for them. You can plan your zoom meeting and calls at the same time with their screen time, that way they will be too engrossed in what they are watching to disturb your meeting.

Also be sure to schedule ‘in time’, in which you are part of their day as well, for example, 12 pm -1 pm can be board games or lunch break with mummy. Your children will have something to look forward to each day and the mental break will be good for you, especially when you are dealing with a stressful situation at work.

Take your lead from the teachers

Most schools have introduced virtual classes as a means to make up for the lost time. You can take a look at your child’s scheduled classes for the week, this will help in knowing when they will be in class and when to schedule other activities to keep them busy while you work.

Create projects

You can create fun age-appropriate projects that will keep your kids engaged and entertained. Go to YouTube to check for age-appropriate DIY videos for your kids. An example can be building a city with cardboard boxes, pillows and blankets, and so on. Toymaking, art, and craft, or even painting projects. The good thing about this is that it not only keeps your kids busy, it helps in stimulating their minds, enhancing their motor skills and creativity.

If you can, plan the night before

Some days, you may just want to go to bed after a long day. That’s normal and perfectly fine. But if you can, try to plan the next day’s itinerary before you sleep. This is very important especially if you have an early morning meeting the next day. It’ll ensure your kids are happy and occupied, and not throwing a tantrum during that video conference with your CEO.

Spend time outside, if you can

If you live in a house with a big garden or backyard, allow your kids to go out and play. Vitamin D is great for our overall health, and going outside even for a few minutes each day gives children the space they need to roam. If your kids aren’t up to the age where they can play without supervision, you can take your laptop outside so you can keep a watchful eye on them.

Write letters to teachers, friends or grandparents 

You can keep your kids busy by channeling your son or daughter’s creativity toward letter writing or picture drawing. Let them write a letter to their friends in school or to their teacher or even to their grandparents while you get some work done. Not only will your child learn a lesson in compassion, but your relative will also receive a nice surprise to lift their spirits.

Assign ‘work’ to your kids

For the foreseeable future, when your kids ask you what you’re doing, you’ll likely say “working”. This word doesn’t always make sense to them, so a way to teach them is to assign tasks to them.  Give them puzzles to finish, LEGO lands to build, separate the bean seeds from the shaft, arrange the throw pillows in the sitting room. You can set a timer for an hour so they can work and then ask them to prepare a presentation afterward to show off their work.

Dance videos

Most kids can operate tablets and phones from younger ages. Set your child up with some music (that isn’t too loud to disturb your work), show them how to make a video (if they don’t already know how), provide props or dress-up clothes and have them take dance videos (or other silly videos) that they can share with you.

Designate an area for your ‘home office’

It is important to have a designated area (preferably a spare room) that will enable you to organize your files, stay on task, and minimize interruptions. Let your kids also know that this is mummy’s work area and teach them not to come to the work area while you’re working. It is important to follow a schedule even while working so if you work 9 -5, try to keep it at that with short breaks in between to check on the kids.

Balancing children and a full-fledged workload is not a walk in the park, especially during this period. It’s okay to occasionally treat yourself now and then to your favorite meal or a movie for your efforts. Most importantly, enjoy the process as you get to spend more time with the people that mean the most to you!

Have any tips to keep your kids busy while you work from home? Feel free to share.

With the deadly Lassa and Coronaviruses currently in the country, there is need to ensure that our children’s immune system are in good shape. For children; their immune systems are just like an antivirus warning message; it’s needs an update every so often, says Ifeyinwa Omesiete, a Pediatric nutrition consultant based in Lagos.

Mostly because children are explorers and are more susceptible to many illnesses as their immune system isn’t strong enough to fight a lot of infections. Between the ages of zero to six years, the average child would have had over 20 different cold/viral infection cases (this is excluding bacterial infections). This number may seem alarming but it’s expected and that is why building their immune system needs to be at the top of every parents to-do list.

According to Omesiete, there are three major but simple ways to boost the immunity of any child. They may seem ordinary but with consistency; they have proven to be very effective.

Water Intake: From the first day of life, every child is exposed to fluids; be it breast milk or formula. The reason is mainly because the body is made up of at least 70 per cent of water, you should also ensure proper circulation of blood and nutrients; the body’s water content needs to be maintained. Between six months to a year, the minimum water intake should be 250-500ml daily. Between one to two years, every child should consume at least 750ml of water. Ages two to four years, at least a liter of water, and from four years upwards, at least two liters of water. Low water intake can decrease oxygen flow throughout the body and it also decreases the effective removal of toxins from the body which overtime can weaken the immune system. One of the easiest ways to get any child to drink water is by setting the example. So, as a parent, drink more water in the presence of your children and keep drinking water accessible and in plain sight.

Spirulina: Spirulina is a natural blue green algae (cyanbacteria) that is an incredible source of absorbable nutrients. When harvested correctly from non-contaminated ponds and bodies of water, it is one of the most potent nutrient sources available. Taking about half a teaspoon spirulina daily is the equivalent of 1 egg or ½ a banana or 300ml of Milk. Spirulina is a complete protein and an excellent source of Vit A, B12, B2, B3, Iron, Zinc and Omega 6 fatty acids. It provides the body with antioxidants, which are key in reducing oxidative stress and inflammation in the body. Simply put, what you cannot get your child to eat in their diet, spirulina will do the trick.

Fruits and vegetables: This is almost cliché, but not to be taken for granted. A lot of health professionals educate parents about the importance of fruits and vegetables in a child’s diet but let’s look at this from a nutritionist’s standpoint. A daily serving of a variety of fruits and vegetables provides fiber for proper digestion of foods, phytonutrients like beta-carotene which turn into Vit A in the body, and Minerals like Iron which increase the absorption of Vit C in the body to fight infections.

A missed serving causes a decline in the nutrients listed above which when they are depleted begin to deplete other nutrients like Zinc, potassium, calcium and so on. That’s why when a child who lacks these nutrients is exposed to a virus or bacteria; quickly gets infected and doesn’t have strong immune cells to fight. For children who do not like vegetables; there can be blended or juiced with fruits. They can also be made into popsicles or even baked. The trick is to get creative with the approach of serving them.

In conclusion, Omesiete said that every child deserves a fighting chance against infections and with these three ways, every parent is sure of kicking their child’s immune system up a notch.

A mother will do anything for her children, no matter how old they get. A 98-year-old mom went viral. But why? She decided to move into the same nursing home her son was in so she could look after him.

 Ada Keating is the amazing woman who wanted nothing more than to be by her son’s side when she needed him the most. Even in her old age, this mom knows best, and it seems that both mom and son are thankful for the companionship in the picture below.

Tom Keating, Ada’s son, became a resident at Moss View care home in Huyton, Liverpool, back in 2016 since he needed more care than he could receive at home. The following year, his mother Ada decided she couldn’t bear being without him. Therefore, she moved into the same nursing home to be with him. Mom and son are so thankful they get to spend so much time together, and they enjoy watching TV and playing games to pass the time.

MEET THE KEATINGS

Ada and Tom were born in Wavertree, Liverpool, and have always been close. That’s because Tom has lived with his mother for all his adult life, never having been married. Ada said they have a routine in place so he knows what to expect. “I say goodnight to Tom in his room every night and I’ll go and say good morning to him,” she said. “I’ll tell him I’m coming down for breakfast.”

Ada says that they still have a deep bond even in their older age. “When I go out to the hairdressers he’ll look for me to see when I’m coming back,” she said. “When I get back he’ll come to me with his arms outstretched and give me a big hug. You never stop being a mum.” Tom added, “They’re very good here and I’m happy to see my mum more now she lives here. Sometimes she’ll say ‘behave yourself.’ She’s very good at looking after me.”

Tom is the oldest of four children; he had three sisters, Barbara, Margi, and Janet who passed away at 13. Tom worked as a painter and decorator before his retirement. Ada worked as a nurse at Mill Road Hospital before she retired. Their family members visit them often at home and are happy to see the two back together again. Some days, up to five generations of the Keating family come visiting!

Debi Higham, Ada’s granddaughter, comes to visit the two often. She said, “There’s no parting them. It’s reassuring for us that they’re both getting looked after 24/7.”

BELOVED BY THE NURSING HOME STAFF

The manager at the nursing home, Philip Daniels, said he’s happy the pair can be together at his facility.

“It’s very touching to see the close relationship both Tom and Ada share and we are so pleased we were able to accommodate both of their needs,” he revealed.

He added, “It’s very rare to see mothers and their children together in the same care home and we certainly want to make their time together as special as possible. They are inseparable.”

Isn’t this such a heartwarming story of a Mom and son’s unbreakable bond? If it touched your heart, please share with your friends and family!

Becoming independent is a critical part of growth and making mistakes can be a natural phenomenon that every individual will go through. How it is handled and lessons learnt from mistakes make the difference.

When kids make mistakes, most parents can be quick to judge their incompetence and lack of maturity, but then, it is a learning curve that gives everyone the opportunity to grow and become truly independent.

According to a parenting enthusiast and mum, Gift Adokie, when kids make mistakes that embarrass or disappoint their parents, it is important for parents to learn how to overcome the feelings of failure and not take it personally.

Having worked with parents as an educator of students with severe behaviour issues, she said that parents can do everything “right” and children will still make mistakes. Mistakes are a natural part of life and critical to learning, growing, and becoming independent. Missteps and failures allow kids to gain valuable insight, develop critical thinking skills, and acquire essential traits like resilience, grit, and self-compassion.

According to Adokie: “When your child makes a mistake that disappoints or embarrasses you, berating yourself is not going to help this situation. Feeling guilty is not either. In both cases, you are taking responsibility for something that is not yours to own. If your children think you are blaming yourself for their actions or making excuses for them, that is giving them the wrong message.

“Taking time to communicate your expectations, your belief in their capability, and making a plan for moving forward is a far better way to spend your time and energy.”

Adokie stressed that it may be helpful to keep in mind that when parents take on their children’s mistakes, this becomes a detriment to their children when they get into the real world and do not know how to handle failure or take responsibility for their poor choices.

She added: “By communicating that mistakes are part of life, you also dismiss the notion that perfection is needed in life’s journey, which is also very damaging to personal growth, happiness and wellbeing. We never want our kids to believe they are failures when they experience failure.

“Commending them for owning a mistake and getting back up to try again is extremely beneficial. Sharing mistakes from your own life and how you handled them helps kids perceive you as a trusted source of support when things go wrong.”

Owning your own mistakes and apologising for them provides a powerful example for young people to follow.

She added that, above all, these are the three mistake reminders to keep in the forefront when kids make mistakes:

• How I collect myself and move forward in courage and love after making a misstep shows kids how to move forward in courage and love when they make a misstep.

• We are not the sum of our mistakes; we are not a collection of our failings; we are human and sometimes we just need a moment and every moment is a chance to start anew.

• Mistakes mean we are learning, growing, taking risks, and showing up. The day we stop making mistakes is the day we stop living. Let us live bravely, boldly, flawed, and full of hope.

By Ijeoma Thomas-Odia for Guardian

Bukola Lameed,  fondly called “Bookkies” is an incredible blend of passion and skill. Professional Counselor, Certified Cognitive Behavioural Change Therapist and one of Africa’s leading Family Mental Health Coach. The founder of Safety Republic  International whose job is to create solutions for preserving the mental and emotional wellness of every member of a nation (the family), help influence the best behaviour and happiness through Training, Coaching, Therapy and Advocacy.

She is an Author of the book, “In a Child’s Mind” and “A parenting Manual” as she uses her skills to raise the confidence and esteem of children who will feel secured as they transit into adulthood.

She is an Emotional Intelligence Certified Specialist, a seasoned International Speaker, Registered Social worker and licenced Family Life Therapist and Broadcaster using the media to propagate the awareness of mental wellness.

An Alumnus of Coventry University United Kingdom and intentional parent to three lovely children.

The wonderful coach who has helped a lot of Parents, especially moms understand the full scope of parenthood shares her inspiring story and journey with me in this interview.

 

Childhood Influence

I grew up in the midst of boys, 4 of them.  So I have the premonition of what the society term Masculinity. I am the 5th child the 1st girl in a family of 8.  Growing up for me was very adventurous and exciting, my childhood experiences were a little diffrent from a normal girl child, I was raised to be very indulged, never did house chores, never ran errands, no thanks to my dad (R. I.P).

Inspiration behind Safety Republic

The inspiration came from a place of helplessness and clueless ness to curiosity. If I didn’t know anything I knew I didn’t want to raise my children the way I was raised. I knew there was more to parenting than what I knew then. So I began to search for answers first on how to raise my children well. Moreso I have a deep passion to protect children because I wasn’t protected as a child, I decided to join and learn from several social groups that focuses on children. Then I discovered there’s a lot to learn, unlearn and relearn not only to raise my children but for every precious child. I realised beyond passion skill is required.

Parental Influence on a Child’s Mental Health

As an expert in the field of family mental and emotional health, child protection and safety,  I have discovered that children are the reflection of the adults around them, as a child handler you have to be mentally and emotionally stable before you can raise a mentally and emotionally stable child, who would also transit into becoming a stable adult and the cycle continues.  I realise that whoever we are as a  child is who we become as an adult.  So as parents (primary and secondary caregivers) we must consciously begin to preserve childhood experiences by first ensuring we intentionally  unlearn some unhealthy narratives first about ourselves as adults  and about our parenting roles and responsibilities.

Modern day Parenting & Social Media

Personally I believe that there is nothing like modern day parenting, parenting should still remain the same regardless of the century but the methods in achieving the desired results are what should be updated, just like how a car company would upgrade the features of a car brand, its still the same brand but they keep reviewing the systems and features for it to be relevant to what is obtainable at that period.

Challenges of being a Mental Health Advocate

Doing this work in it’s own is challenging, one of the many challenges we encounter is the ability to make adults unlearn certain cobditioned belief systems and unhealthy behaviours learnt from the environment,  culture and religion that had greatly affected and limited the benefits of living a wholesome lives…

Effect on broken Marriages on Kids

One of the many behavioural challenges children are facing came from the fact that they experienced their parents broken marriages. Adverse childhood experiences is a major factor every family should consider whenever they are making their decisions either to stick together or go their separate ways. Adults must begin to embrace therapy and seek professional counsel for both themselves and their children in order to make their decisions (divorce) easy on their children.

Being a Woman of Rubies

Looking at the meaning of Rubies, is exactly who I have always seen myself to be “a priceless precious jewel, passionate, powerful, pretty, and fierce, once in a life time kind of woman”. I am a Woman of Rubies

Parenting Nuggets

Parenting is an ART, you must learn it… you must first parent yourself before you can parent a child..

A child is a unique product that comes with his own unique user’s manual, that must be read and understood on order to get it working at it’s best!

As a parent you do not have the power to change a child, but you can learn the tools of influence.

Children’s vulnerability is adults responsibility,  children are not vulnerable when adults are responsible enough to parent them well.

Finally, the idea of parenting is not to raise your carbon copy, but to raise a wholesome child who can make his or her  own mistakes and create experiences to become his own unique self.

 

 

I remember my life as a young mum, having to take care of my toddlers and still go to work. On this particular day, I was so overwhelmed and exhausted and started to wonder if this was what motherhood was all about. How long was I going to continue like this? I felt so helpless that I broke down in tears.

This wasn’t the plan. I want to take care of my kids and also excel in my work as a mum. I discussed with my husband about how I felt and how he needed to help with school runs and some other things. Lo and behold, he agreed immediately. I then asked him why he didn’t suggest to help out all this while. I mean, must I get to this point before you help? He then said something profound, “You never asked for help.” 

Interesting!

Anyway, this is history. After that, I learned the act of asking for help, not just from my husband, but from anyone around me that could be of help, even if it will cost me money. I am happy to say that since then (over 10 years ago), my life has been less overwhelming.

Life as a mum can be pretty demanding and overwhelming. You are faced with basically the same routine and responsibilities on a daily basis. Having to cook, prepare the kids for school, do their homework, handling home chores and to cap it all, you have to work too.

Many times, we are so overtaken by all these demands and it starts to take a toll on your life. It starts to affect everything from physical appearance to emotions, mental health, and even your relationships.

So, how do you know you’re overwhelmed. Here are a few telltale signs:

  • You feel disorganized. Everything seems out of place at work and at home
  • You are anxious. You worry about everything, even the little things.
  • You don’t get enough sleep or you have difficulty sleeping.
  • Zero focus. You go through each day as it comes, you have nothing to look forward to. No drive or goal to achieve anything.
  • You feel depressed and unhappy.  You’re unexcited about life and even the small wins you achieve means nothing to you.
  • Health challenges start to surface. Frequent headaches, chest pains, high BP or worse, heart attack.

Tips to help you overcome being overwhelmed:

  • Feel free to talk to a friend or someone about how you feel and use any good suggestions given.
  • Learn to break down your tasks in order of priority.
  • Learn to say NO. It is better to turn down a request than take it up and not do it properly.
  • Learn to ask for help from family, friends or siblings so you can focus on other tasks.
  • Tell your spouse how you feel and how you want him to help.
  • Take time out to cool off, watch a comedy, listen to music, take yourself to lunch, watch a movie or just take a nap.

Having done all these, pray! Always rely on God for help, wisdom, and direction.

Benefits of not being overwhelmed:

  • Your mind is open to opportunities.
  • Your mind is free from self-imposed limits, you start to see solutions rather than problems.
  • Your mind is free of negative thoughts and feelings.
  • You have better chances to love and be loved by others.
  • You have increased energy to take action on your tasks/goals.
  • You have more time to spend with your kids and your partner.

As a mum, the less overwhelmed you are, the less stressed you are and the happier everyone is.

About the Author

Temi Olajide is a Certified Child Sleep Consultant and Child Psychologist.Co-founder of Association of Child Sleep Consultants of Nigeria and a member of International Association of Child Sleep Consultants.Founder of Mummyclinicc, an online platform that provides strategies & result driven solutions to the challenges of child rearing and helps mothers to successfully combine the requirements of life and motherhood while responding correctly to the peculiarities of the digital age. Temi is the author of Wi-Fi Kids and Analog Parents, a comprehensive book that equips parents on how to raise well-rounded kids in the digital age. www.mummyclinicc.com,Instagram @mummyclinicc

Source: Bellanaija

Mrs. Biodun Bello is the Administrator of Wholistic Outreach, a pet project of the wife of the General Overseer of the Redeem Christian Church of God (RCCG), Pastor Folu Adeboye, with the aim of rehabilitating commercial sex workers, destitute, rescuing stranded and homeless girls, among others. In this interview with ENIOLA DANIEL, the coordinator spoke on parenting, how the mission is rescuing the destitute and what government can do to discourage the social vice.

When did you start Wholistic Outreach and what are the things it set out to achieve?
WHOLISTIC Outreach was established in 2002 by our mother-in-Israel, Pastor (Mrs) Folu Adeboye. It’s a home to cater to commercial sex workers, trafficked girls, and stranded teenagers, restoring their lives and giving them hope. To the glory of God, we achieve this through rehabilitation.

We have a team lead by Mrs. Kemi Aaredokun Richard, and we go out on a weekly basis to brothels and other places to rescue the girls. And we go anywhere they give us the opportunity to minister and tell them about the Love of God and if the manager of the place permits us, after then, we hold special outreach where we go with our medical team and food. And once they come out, we have a shelter home, which we call the first point of entry. They spend a minimum of three months and maximum of six months in the shelter home. We have various programmes for them, they fast, they pray and they go for different programmes including deliverance in Hallelujah House; after that, we reconcile them to their families.

After preaching to them and they accept to follow us, we take them to the police station to record them that they are with us because we don’t want to go against the law, and we sign them out when they are going back to their family. Some go back to their families while the families release others back to us.

What category of people do you rehabilitate?
We deal with girls from age 13 to 38; sometimes we have girls below that age. We send some of them back to school.

Can you tell us how many girls have been rehabilitated since inception and is the Outreach only for rehabilitation of trafficked girls and sex workers?

We have rehabilitated hundreds of girls. Wholistic is mainly for commercial sex workers but we have some girls that ran away from home and are staying under the bridges.

What have been the challenges of changing the orientation of these women to embrace a decent lifestyle?
The challenges are two-fold. We don’t just go to hotels and bring them out; they must be willing before we rehabilitate them. We go there and tell them that there is a better place for them, so we leave after telling and sharing with them. They come out on their own free will.

The challenges mostly are that when they come, some of them get tired and want to go back. Some of them would say they have sex urges and feel like sleeping with men whether they want to pay or not, but that’s why we have counselors, people that stay and pray with them. It’s not something you can stop all of a sudden. Most of the girls don’t really want to go into prostitution; you will be surprised to see some of them are the ones taking care of their family needs.

How do these brothel managers react whenever you visit?
The Bible says that you cannot go to a strong man’s house without binding him. We go in the name of Jesus Christ and with the help of the Holy Spirit. Most of the managers do give their lives to Christ. The manager of the last brothel we visited in Shagamu said he doesn’t want to do the job anymore. One of the girls got married in August. We have lawyers and many who have passed through Universities and are doing well among the rescued.

African parents have been accused of not paying the same level of attention they pay on the female child to the male child, why is Wholistic doing the same rather than focusing on both genders?
RCCG has a home for boys and we call it Habitation of Hope, we have another home for the drug addicts. Presently, we have 48 girls in our home and some of them have children, we have a girl who has been with us since junior secondary school and now she is the University.

What do you do after releasing some of these girls to their parents and they return to the streets because their parents cannot cater to them?
If their parents can’t take care of them, they release them back to us. There are some of these girls from wealthy backgrounds, but they turned into prostitutes. Just like the crime rate in the country is on the rise, it’s the economy that makes some of them do what they do. Some of them follow their aunties to the city without knowing what they’re doing in the city. When the parents cannot take care of their children and one big aunty drives to the village in a big car, they allow their children to follow her; some even take them abroad for prostitution.

You mentioned that some of these girls come from a rich background, what could actually have pushed them into prostitution?
It’s unfortunate that some of our parents are wealthy in resources but don’t really have time for their families. Some may be due to peer pressure.

Picking up a girl as young as 13-year-old off the streets shows how bad the situation is, how do you feel seeing these girls?

You will be surprised to see an 11-year-old on the streets. Some of the commercial sex workers have children in the brothels, many of them give birth in the brothel. A little girl was brought here after she was molested, they destroyed her private part, we treated her and now she’s in JSS1.

We call them daughters in our home, so we sit together and talk and mummy G.O also pays them a visit.

Can you tell us how much you spend on each person monthly?
I can’t give that but I know how much we spend monthly. We spend over N2million monthly, aside from that, we go to mummy G.O to get foodstuff. The mission gives us money on a quarterly basis and she gives us money every month to cater for the needs of the girls.

Do you partner with other NGOs?
This is not about RCCG alone; we just came back from training in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. We have other NGOs that even if my home is filled up, I can call other people to accommodate them.

Based on your experience, what would be your advice to parents and society at large?
Parents must find time for their children; everything cannot be solved with money. We have a girl in our home whose grandfather was molesting her and we got involved, the grandma said, “baba was just playing with her,” after he was caught.

Parents must learn to visit their children in school unannounced. And our daughters must not think everything must be achieved now, they must look at the future, they must know that the sky is just a starting point.

Source: Guardian

Raising children in this digital age is different from our days where we were raised with restrictions. In the digital age, there are no restrictions. Everything is out there , whether you like it or not. This makes it challenging for parents to raise their children, if they don’t become deliberate and intentional about it.

Recently, I was having a conversation with a client, and as we continued the conversation, I said “parenting is a business and it must be treated as such”. Immediately, I said this, I looked at her and I could see that it took some self control for her not to roll her eyes at me. In that moment, I realised that there were probably a lot of mums out there who would probably not agree with this statement.

I could understand why this lady thought this way. We know that a business is the act of making, buying or selling products or services in exchange for money; so, classifying parenting as a business sounded absurd to her.

If you take a minute to think about it, you’ll realise that God placed the business of parenting in your hands. He also gave clear instructions when He blessed you with that child which is to train him up the way he should go!

In this digital age, everything you thought you knew about parenting has probably changed. However, our role as parents remain the same . Therefore, you cannot continue to use the ancient method you were brought up with, with your children and expect to get great results.

I have come to realize that when things are practicable, we understand it, because we can visualize it better. So, let’s relate it to real life business. As parents, you will do everything you can to grow in your business or career. You will pay business coaches, take professional courses, write qualifying exams, travel for days or months, if necessary, to progress in your field. However, when it comes to raising your child, you prefer to figure it out, make mistakes and wait for God to sort it out for you.

Can you progress in your business or career, if the knowledge you use is outdated? Imagine using the knowledge of 5,10, 20 years ago to operate in 2019? You would be out of a job if you had a career, or out of business if you were an entrepreneur as your competition must have taken over . In fact, it’s no news that if you want to succeed in business in this day and age, you must continuously innovate.

Now, if you must continuously innovate yourself or business to stay ahead of your competitors, why do you think it is okay to parent your kids in the same way you were brought up 20, 30 years ago? Why are you not seeking new ways to raise your digitized babies?

We have left raising our children to chance, the internet, gadgets, schools, teachers and religious organisations. We don’t do this to our businesses/careers? Why do that to your children? Your children are given to you to nurture, teach, guide and train and it is a role you shouldn’t take lightly.

Raising children in this digital age is different from our days where we were raised with restrictions. In the digital age, there are no restrictions. Everything is out there , whether you like it or not. This makes it challenging for parents to raise their children, if they don’t become deliberate and intentional about it. The days of trial and error are long gone. We need to start to seek help where necessary, because in this day and age it is so easy to lose a child.

Why?

Because the world is moving too fast and children are easily carried away if they aren’t brought up the right way.

Want to learn how to parent right and excel in this business of raising your child? Here are a few helpful tips:

Be a role model
Your kids are watching. 80% of your parenting is made easier if you practice what you preach to your children.

Speak positively
Rather than label your child in the negative light, use a positive approach. For example, rather than say you’re a liar, say, you know you’re not a liar, so why did you have to lie?

Create and spend quality time with them
Spending as little as 30 minutes a day, intentionally, will have more impact on them than not spending any time at all. Your children will also appreciate spending this time with you.

Invest in your kids’ talents and gifts
If they’re particularly skilled at something say singing, be their number one cheerleader. Gone are the days you have to be a medical doctor to be rich and famous.

Involve them in your day to day activities
Even if you run a tight schedule, you can bond with them through routine activities like ironing, cooking and cleaning.

Listen to them and don’t be too quick to judge
Your kids are human beings too, ask for their opinion on issues concerning them and listen to them.

Be quick to apologize when you’re wrong
Some of our parents are guilty for always wanting to be right and never apologising when they’re wrong. Don’t be that parent. In fact, don’t be too surprised if your little one calls you out for not apologising. We are in 2019 after all.

Invest in getting knowledge
Some of us need more help than others when it comes to parenting. If you think you need more knowledge to raise your child(ren), get it.

Teach them through life stories
Children often connect better with stories, so ensure you teach them valuable life lessons in the same way. In addition, it is okay to be vulnerable with your children.

Teach them the power of choice and consequences of decisions
Help them to understand that the choices they make can make or mar them for life.

Pray for them and with them
Prayer is key when raising kids in this day and age. But, remember you have a part to play before God can do His. Some parents are quick to hide under the umbrella of prayers and forget their responsibility.

While it takes a village to raise a child, being an intentional parent, who puts in some work and thought, will surely help in the long run.

Source: Bellanaija