(Posted 2020 June, Updated 2021 May)
Most Monday evenings since April 2020, staff with the Parenting Education Programs have logged into a Zoom meeting room to welcome Fairfax County parents searching for peer support, advice, encouragement and resources. According to facilitator Janet Little, “This community shows up seeking a lifeline. Some are parents of children with special needs, some are parents who have attended a Parenting Class in the past, and many are parents overwhelmed with the day-to-day challenges of 24/7 parenting, especially during this pandemic.”
More than 100 parents have expressed an interest in the Virtual Parent Cafés, and on average about 15 parents attend the Parent Cafés each week as they are available. Some people come and go throughout the call, while others stay on for the entire discussion. It is a diverse group including moms and dads from a variety of different backgrounds. What they all have in common is the commitment to be better parents.