JIS News

Residents from the Hellshire Park Estate in St. Catherine have benefited from a parenting seminar aimed at improving the family structure.
The seminar was held yesterday (October 21) at the Hellshire Park Estate Basic School. Resource person was Reginald Crutchly, motivational speaker and Chairman of the TNT Motivation and Recand Marketing Company.
The parenting seminar is one of the components of the government’s Values and Attitudes programme launched two years ago and being implemented by the Urban Development Corporation (UDC). The programme involves the teaching and reinforcing of wholesome behaviour in Jamaicans and the encouragement of positive thinking among young people.
In her address to the gathering, Corporate Relations Manager at the UDC, Joan Smalling, explained that the workshop was aimed at teaching parents “proper values and attitudes” and for them to pass these qualities on to their children.
“Unfortunately we do not always get the proper values from our parents and so we continue to perpetuate the errors that we learnt from our parents,” she said, noting that there were not enough institutions where parents could go to learn parenting skills.
Additionally, she pointed out, schools involved in the programme were encouraged to develop a “land of manners corner” which was judged, and for which prizes were awarded for the most outstanding corner.
She informed her audience that the “land of manners” booklet, originally written by Barbara Gloudon, had been re-printed and distributed to selected basic and primary schools in Montego Bay, Westmoreland, St. Catherine and Portland.
Miss Smalling further informed that talks were conducted at schools to encourage teachers and parents to pass on some of the values to the children. These are “values such as honesty, saying good morning, saying thank you; simple things that somehow, as a nation we have forgotten and have become so crude and crass in our ways. We are trying to reinforce those values once more starting with our little ones,” she said.
In addition, she said that at the end of the school year, the most disciplined boy and girl from each school would be given a prize.
Community Development Officer at UDC, Phillip Biggs, told JIS News that a similar seminar was recently held at the Crescent Basic School in St. Catherine and others were expected to take place at the Morgan’s and Caymanas Estate Basic Schools in the parish.
“We try to work with the parents attached to these schools as far as parenting skills and parenting seminars are concerned,” he added.

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