Latest PNS Member Spotlight February 2019 - Lorna Mitchell February 2019 - Lorna Mitchell Hi I’m Lorna, I am the lead facilitator for PNS and have been part of the team for just over 7 years. I have two handsome sons, a gorgeous granddaughter, and another grandchild on the way. I love spending quality time with my family and enjoy the special moments together. I believe being a parent is the most challenging role we can have, and continued development through understanding and learning new ways of dealing with challenges builds closer relationships with both ourselves and our children. The training PNS offers allows for this development; learning new tools, receiving and contributing to peer learning, and having a safe non-judgemental space for reflection helps to build closer relationships within families. After completing our Parenting Matters Course most parents choose to carry on their learning and embark on our Development Award & Community Achievement Award which gives parents skills to hold parent to parent support groups. Parents tend to want to give back the support they have received within their own communities. I believe it takes a village to raise a child - this is where our support groups and hubs come into play, offering parents ongoing peer support and free fun family time, which breaks down many barriers for parents to be the best they can be. One of the many groups that has carried on their learning and now opens their group to welcome new young parents, is the Young Parents Leadership Group who agree that it takes a village to raise a child; “we don’t have a village - we do have a group of friends that create a support system where we can be ourselves and keep it real” The development within the organisation that stands out the most for me is our Parenting Matters course becoming accredited through Glasgow Kelvin College, and I am glad to have been part of the implementation of this. All parents now have an option to gain a qualification when embarking on our Parenting Matters course. Another development that stands out for me is PNS facilitators are now trained to deliver ACEs workshops, which creates more safe space for parents to explore trauma, and become equipped with knowledge, understanding and grounding techniques to further develop and raise awareness as a parent and a person, by applying the learning to themselves and their children. As the lead on our Quality Assurance I can assure that the feedback we receive from both parents and practitioners is outstanding in the parenting field. During one of our Quality Assurance Events both practitioners and parents took part in a small group exercise to create quotes to describe PNS. I’m sure you will agree these quotes say it all! “PNS values and allows parents and practitioners to confidently find their own way in both parenting and in the workplace “PNS enables strength, self-compassion, positivity, inclusion regard and to contribute not only in family relationships but in meaningful relationships every day” “We define parenting as a journey not a destination” “A unique life changing experience” “Parenting is not about perfection it’s about positivity, and remembering to have a break.” At another quality assurance event we asked small groups of parents to create a poem the Gestalt way by expressing, through their senses, their PNS experience; "PNS Looks Like A future, one big family, friendly, lots of people, pink/purple balloons, love, togetherness, and belonging. PNS Sounds Like Shiny Happy People, Karaoke, Hope, Supporting fund, A support base movement, Warmth and confidence PNS Feels Like Friends and family, Empowerment, Warm and trusting, important, confidence, a listening service PNS Remind Me Of Family, My childhood, My mum’s hugs, a journey taking a positive route, feeling good – care – empowerment, I’m doing good and moving forward" On reflection of my time with PNS I have learned being congruent, empathic, and giving unconditional positive regard while going the extra mile is the key to a successful organisation within this sector.