Circle of Parents is a parent-led and professionally facilitated parent support group program that gives parents the opportunity to share in each other’s challenges and successes while developing a network of support. While Circle of Parents is open to anyone who wants to participate, many groups focus on parents with specific needs -- like grandparents raising grandchildren, fathers of preschoolers, Spanish-speaking parents, or parents of special needs children. Participants learn how to advocate for their children and how to parent in a positive way. They also build leadership skills and gain a network of support.
Circle of Parents builds protective factors in families by providing parents with a support network of other families who understand them. Program objectives include:
Creating and enhancing social connections, thereby reducing isolation and helping ease the burden of parenting.
Enhancing parents' resiliency through interaction with other families like theirs, allowing parents to discuss frustrations and share successes involved in challenging family circumstances.
Increasing knowledge of parenting and child development through sharing of resources and information.
Promoting social and emotional competence of children by giving children access to a network of supportive adults who model appropriate behavior.
Increasing access to concrete support in times of need by linking parents to resources throughout the community and within the group.
Circle of Parents has been extensively researched. The North Carolina Circle of Parents Network evaluates program success annually. Outcomes demonstrated through state and national research include:
Parents increase their social support network by connecting with other parents and community resources.
Parents have more confidence in themselves and their parenting abilities.
Parents learn new parenting skills and become more familiar with child development.
Parents learn and demonstrate problem-solving skills.
Parents learn new ways to cope with stress and manage impulsive reactions.
Parents become empowered to influence other parents and their community.
Parents improve their parenting skills and their relationship with their children.
Services from Prevent Child Abuse North Carolina
Circle of Parents Training
Prevent Child Abuse North Carolina has nationally-certified Circle of Parents trainers on staff who provide pre-service training and ongoing skill-building opportunities for local facilitators and parents involved with the program.
Membership in the NC Circle of Parents Network gives access to training, technical assistance, materials, program evaluation and other supports provided by Prevent Child Abuse North Carolina Implementation Support Specialists to assure quality Circle of Parents programs are available in local communities.