• Gerard Horgan/GH

Support For Families During Lockdown

Updated: Apr 16, 2020

The challenges for parents and families during this unprecedented crisis are hard to understate. This Blog post has collated a few online articles as well as some governmental tips. Hopefully the information below assists those who find themselves in different familial situations. If you have any tips of your own then don't hesitate to contact me at gerardhorgan@gmail.com.

Supportive Family Articles

Dr Sarahjane Belton from the DCU School of Health & Human Performance has an interesting article entitled How to keep yourself and your kids active during the lockdown on the RTE website, click here

Arlene Harris has a really good article on the Irish Times website entitled, How To Keep Children Happy, Learning And Entertained At Home, click here

The Wanderlust Blog has an interesting article, 30 Things To Do With Your Kids, click here

Annalisa Barbieri's Guardian article, Climbing the walls? How to Cope As A Family When You Can't Escape Each Other, is worth a read, click here

Donna Ferguson has an insightful piece, also in the Guardian, ‘Don’t make a drama’: a survival guide for parents during family isolation, click here

UNICEF details '6 key ways parents can support their kids through the Coronavirus Outbreak', click here

Supporting Your Child

Being around each other 24/7, especially if that is not your normal pattern, can be stressful and cause tensions to rise. To avoid daily battles, here are some simple tips from an Irish Government website to keep everyone on good terms:

Keep to a schedule and routine – It will help your child to feel more secure if they know what they will be doing next and when.

Understand that they might be anxious and fearful about the current situation. Talk to them, acknowledge their fears and reassure them.

Make sure they get good quality sleep – it’s important that they go to bed around the same time as they would if they were still going to school.

Your children need to be active every day. All activity, no matter how short, counts - whether it’s going for a walk, a scoot or active play at home.

Make time for yourself everyday – even if it’s just a few minutes.

Try to play with your children everyday – for example getting down on the floor with them, playing with “Lego” or even colouring pictures together. You can build a strong relationship with your child through playing with them.

Ignore minor misbehaviours, once your child or others are not being put at risk. If minor misbehaviour continues, or is more serious, you will need to act. Try not to shout. If you react calmly your child is more likely to react calmly in future. A firm explanation is usually more effective.

Let them make some of their own decisions. This will increase confidence, independence and let them learn from mistakes.

Pick your battles – Don’t try to change everything. Small changes can make a big difference.

Know there is no such thing as a perfect parent. Be a good enough parent. We all learn through trial and error.

For extra advice and information you can contact Parentline at 1890 927 277, Barnardos at 1800 910 123 or go to www.mychild.ie

The above list of points come from an Irish government webpage which has further advice for families and individuals, click here

Help & Hope In Cases Of Domestic Abuse

Domestic abuse is sadly an issue in our society but there is help out there and where there is Help, there is Hope. Please see the following:

  • For the Women's Aid Website, click here or ring 1800 341 900.

  • Amen is a service for men who are experiencing domestic abuse, click here

  • For SafeIreland, click here

  • The National Office for Victims of Abuse provides assistance, support and advice for people in abusive relationships. Freephone 1800 252 524.

  • Older people who are experiencing abuse in the home can call the HSE information line on 1850 24 1850.

  • Childline is a confidential support service for children and young people. They take calls about a wide range of difficulties, including abuse. You can contact them 24 hours-a-day on 1800 66 66 66. You can also text 'Talk' to 50101.

  • The HSE National Counselling Service is a free and confidential service. It offers counselling and psychotherapy. This service gives priority to adults who have experienced trauma and abuse in childhood. Adult survivors of institutional abuse get priority. You can call the HSE National Counselling Service on 1800 235 235.



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