Passionate About Play!
The arrival of a new baby can be a challenging time for parents with sleepless nights, feeding difficulties and learning to adapt to a change in daily routine, not to mention getting to know the newest family member. This is never more true than following the birth of your first baby.
Many parents can find an increasing sense of isolation and disconnection from friends and community…. suddenly the world has shrunk to life inside four walls where all plans can be abandoned at the whim of a tiny person with unpredictable needs and routines.
After leaving hospital with a newborn, you will be invited to visit your local child health nurse in the community, and this often includes an opportunity to join a “mother’s group” for parents and babies of a similar age. But what happens after those early days?
This is where Playgroup comes in. Playgroups come in many shapes and sizes but usually comprise of a group of parents, caregivers or extended family who come together to learn together through play. The benefits to joining a playgroup are vast and not limited to social and developmental stimulation for children, but also the opportunity for new parents to make friendships and support one another through the ever-changing new world of parenthood.
Playgroups are as diverse as the families that attend them, and some cater for fathers, nature based, cultural, rainbow and intergenerational groups.
If you already have a group of friends with children 0-5 who are interested in meeting regularly you can start your own…or to find a playgroup near you just contact playgroupwa.com.au and they will put you in touch with a group that suits your needs.
Playgroups are a vital part of our community that bring so many benefits to children and parents alike…. I hope you’ll be as lucky as I was-15 years on and our playgroup mums and kids still catch up every school holidays…we made friends for life!
This article was written by Dr Jane Gibson