"My journey with Parent Network Scotland started at Glencairn Primary School where both my youngest attend.   I started attending parent classes that were being ran there and was told about PNS by Vivienne who ran the groups and worked for North Ayrshire Council.  She thought I was a good candidate for PNS.  She planted the seed a few times until I eventually asked what it was all about and then started my parent matters courses last September.  I then went on and achieved my Development Award and now attend monthly meetings for the Parent Link Volunteer Programme.  During the parent matters course I learnt a lot about myself and how to engage more with my children.  I learnt a lot of tools that I have been able to use both at home and outside of the home resulting in a more relaxed environment for my children.

The Development Award challenged me, I sometimes felt out of my comfort zone and a few times panicked at tasks as I felt I couldn’t do them.  Confidence through both courses was a massive issue for me, but by being guided by the facilitators I was able to achieve them resulting in myself speaking during the Development Award which was a massive thing for me to do. The biggest lightbulb moment for me through Parenting Matters and Development Award was “I can do this!”

My Parent Link Volunteer journey has been a rollercoaster.  One minute I feel I can take on the world, next I’m not so sure if I have got what it takes, but by attending the monthly meetings I am becoming more confident and can see where I want to be.  I have really enjoyed the facilitator training this has opened my mind to challenge myself.   I have now approached my school and I have my own walking group once a week for parents and their children and I have a monthly coffee morning with the hope of making them more frequent.  I have also been part of recruitment within Glencairn Primary School to bring parents to a Parent Matters course with the aim that I will keep this group going after their training. 

This journey has made it easier for me to engage with the school and with other parents.  I feel this is encouraging a healthy school relationship.  Having a face they know make parents feel more comfortable.  I am now on the parent’s council so I get a lot of people approach me about things that that they may not feel comfortable asking to the head teacher.  I sometimes become a sounding board but I feel I now have good communication and listening skills from my training and I can help other parents feel connected to the school and their child’s learning.

I now feel part of something.   I am now someone for people to approach, to talk to which helps them feel connected to the school and this gives me a massive sense of achievement and satisfaction.  When I look back to where I was a few years ago to where I am now I am overwhelmed by the change both in my outlook to things and how I approach family life.

I just want to thank PNS for an amazing journey and look forward to what the future holds for myself and PNS."