Children undoubtedly enrich our lives, but raising them can be difficult; many parents and carers would welcome advice or help.
Parents want to give their children a good start in life and see them succeed, and we know the quality of parenting has an impact on children, families, communities and society.
Some challenges faced by parents today are very different from those faced by pervious generations. All parents have the right to expect high-quality information, advice and support from public services.
The council runs many parenting courses from helping with teenagers or very young children to giving your child a sense of their community. We are committed to helping parents be the best they can be.
Our courses are held at venues across Westminster and help you to:
Browse this guide to find out more about the free courses available.
For any further queries, contact Bridie Collins, Parenting Development Manager, on firstname.lastname@example.org or 020 7641 3090.
For the latest news and fantastic family offers, sign up for our Families First newsletter.
Circle of Security (COS) groups are user-friendly, non-judgmental and enjoyable. Using the COS parenting DVD programme, they help families tune in and respond to the emotional needs of their children.
Parents of small children would enjoy the opportunity to tune into the emotional needs of their children. However the programme was designed to be particularly helpful to families where the caregivers find it hard to have empathy for their children or to comprehend and respond to their children’s emotional needs.
The programme has consistently proven to be successful where parents and carers struggle with organisation and insecurity.
FAST helps parents to:
This is an 8-week, after-school programme for parents and children run by trained community members, parents and school staff. Sessions happen at a school.
Parents and children will enjoy activities proven to improve children’s achievement and behaviour in and outside school as well as build relationships between parents and children.
Research shows achievement at school can be improved when parents are involved with their children's learning. FAST helps parents engage with their children’s education and build lasting relationships which can benefit the family, school and community.
87.5% of participating parents felt more able to support their child in their education after FAST, and there was an 8% increase in the overall academic competence of FAST children.
Teachers report improvements in children's confidence and behaviour in the classroom, and a stronger sense of community while parents notice greater enthusiasm for going to school, more confidence when doing schoolwork, calmer behaviour and new friendships.
Teachers looking to run FAST at their school or community members wanting to be involved in a FAST programme should contact Annabelle Narey, FAST Programme Lead, on email@example.com or 020 7641 6265.
Parents wanting to see FAST run at your child's school, speak to your child’s teacher about FAST, asking them to get in touch.
FAST was developed in 1988 by Dr Lynn McDonald, Professor of Social Work at Middlesex University, London.
For Baby’s Sake is a programme for expectant parents, whether together as a couple or not, who want to bring an end to domestic abuse and create the best possible start in life for their baby.
For Baby's Sake helps both parents to make the lasting changes that they want for themselves and their family.
For Baby’s Sake could be recommended if:
Pregnancy is ideally before 28 weeks
Both parents are willing to co parent – they do not have to be in a relationship or live together to take part in the programme
Both parents are aged 17 or over when baby is born
The female co parent/baby lives within the three boroughs (Westminster, Hammersmith & Fulham and Kensington and Chelsea).
Telephone: 07702 538 100
Stress, anxiety and depression in pregnancy can have bad, long-term effects on a child. A mother’s general and mental health during pregnancy is a prime indicator of the wellbeing of their baby.
This 6-week programme helps mothers relax by focusing on what the baby can already do and how to make him or her welcome.
Pregnancy can be hard for mothers who haven't had a good childhood, are under stress or experiencing health problems. Meeting other mums and sharing ideas offers support and opportunities to address issues in the mother’s life as well as preparing for her baby.
Run by experienced practitioners, the structured programme introduces mothers to baby brain development and the social capacities of babies from birth. Mothers will also identify their own needs and how to get support in pregnancy and after the birth.
Users include families with intensive levels of need, including addiction issues, previous child protection concerns, teenage parents and mental health concerns including the effects of trauma, domestic violence and childhood sexual abuse.
Engagement has been good with even very troubled mothers finding confidence and support in the Mellow Bumps group.
Mellow Parenting is a 13-week programme which supports families facing relationship problems with children aged 5 or younger.
Meeting once a week, the programme combines personal support on parenting problems through videos and direct work with families.
The programme consists of:
Parents as Partners in collaboration with the Tavistock Centre for Couple relationships (TCCR) is a 16-week programme for parents looking to improve their relationship to benefit their children.
The Strengthening Families, Strengthening Communities (SFSC) programme is a 13-week programme for parents with children aged 3 to 18-years-old. Sessions are 3-hours long, once a week.
The course empowers parents and carers, helping them to forge positive relationships with their children and others.
You'll learn strategies and develop tools to:
The group shares their experiences and work together to find solutions with the support of the facilitators.
Information is provided for further support after the course has finished, and they will also be connected to community resources to further reduce the risk of isolation.
SFSC also provides a cultural framework to validate the historical and family experiences of different ethnic groups.
Find out about the Prevent Parenting Programme.
The Positive Parenting Programme has been proven to enhance parents’ abilities when managing their children’s behaviour. It does this by promoting understanding of children’s development and gives tools and strategies on increasing respectful behaviour and how to manage misbehaviour.
Triple P is a multi-level intervention programme and parents can be invited to attend a series of seminars (3 90-minute workshops), refer for group sessions or individual one-on-one interventions.
Triple P courses help you to:
Once you’ve completed a Triple P course, it should be easier to:
All Triple P course aim to build positive relationships between parents and their children.
An 8-week programme (including group and phone or drop-in sessions) offered to parents with children aged 2 to 12 years old who live in Westminster or attend a school in Westminster.
An 8-week programme (including group and phone or drop-in sessions) which helps parents develop different ways of coping and strategies for dealing with a variety of adolescent problems within a supportive group atmosphere.
A 9-week programme (including group and phone or drop-in sessions) for parents with children who are aged 2 to 12 years and who have disabilities.