Tangible Help for Mothers! (training courses, seminars, conference, group support)
Many mothers with disabled children feel guilty. They feel isolated and neglected by the rest of community. Some of them have to fight alone, they do not know many other parents that have the same situation and who would be able to share the same experience.
Empowerment is a process through which mothers receive help in fulfilling their parental duties and responsibilities in defending the rights of their own children. Part of this process alludes to presenting information, resources, and opportunities, all of which is needed to sustain children to fully participate in community life. The birth of a disabled child leads, inside the family, to a difficult situation (guilt, frustration,). From our experience we can say that there must be an intervention that is focused on the child in the family and community. For this reason we support the parents in taking charge of the care of their children.
The children with first degree of handicap have the right to a personal assistant. In most situations the personal assistant is the mother. Because of this she can not have a job. She must look after her child 7 day/week, 24 hours/day, with no holiday and no rest. But the mother is also a wife, maybe a mother for other children, so her situation is very difficult. She does not have time for herself. Discussions with mothers involved in our project reveals that more often than not they are burnt out! They have no strength to continue. That is why Star of Hope Romania has the following goal: to undergird the mothers with disabled children. To achieve this goal we propose the following activities:
- Group support for mothers: it is an opportunity for them to discuss, share their experience, and encourage each other. The facilitator for group support is a Star of Hope Romania employee.
- Training courses for parents, (especially mothers), with lectures from Star of Hope Romania, from Sweden. Through these courses mothers receive information about different disabilities and recuperation / habilitation methods as well as how to best support their child through the development stages. One important aspect is alternative communication. And, they can take part at courses "how to become a better parent".
- Women's conference
- Spiritual counseling for mothers.