JIS News

Children’s Advocate, Mary Clarke, has said that proper parenting skills are needed, as parenting practices have a significant impact on the lives of children in Jamaica and the society.
“The impact of improper parenting or the lack of parenting is evident today. We hear of teenage pregnancy, indiscipline, school violence, and other forms of anti social behaviour. Ever so often we can trace these back to the home and the kind of guidance, discipline and values and attitudes that are being imparted to children in the home by parents or guardians,” Mrs. Clarke said.
She was speaking at the launch of the 2006 revised edition of the parenting manual, ‘Pathways to Parenting: A Caribbean Approach’, at the Alhambra Inn in Kingston, today (November 8).
“I am convinced that many parents in Jamaica want the best for their children. But I am also convinced that many parents in Jamaica do not know how and what to do (to help their children),” the Children’s Advocate said.
“They need to be provided with adequate knowledge, services, and skills on child development stages, child rearing, discipline and how to guide their children. We have to provide the help that parents need,” she added.
In the meantime, Mrs. Clarke said parents needed resources, tools and support services to undertake this very challenging and difficult task. “Parenting does not end, it is a long task and responsibility and so it requires commitment,” she emphasised.
The Children’s Advocate called for the provision of affordable and accessible counselling services for families in crisis in Jamaica.
“When I hear of these cases of murder, suicide and violence in the home, I say, had they known they could call someone and just discuss the problem, would we have fewer incidences of domestic violence and child abuse in our society?” Mrs. Clarke asked.Mrs. Clarke congratulated Parenting Partners Caribbean on the launch of the manual.
“I congratulate you for your efforts over the years in improving parenting practices in Jamaica. I notice that you are not only trying to change behaviour practices in Jamaica, but also in the English speaking territories in the region,” the Children’s Advocate said.