Plumtree incubating a family network
The Now and Next program is an award winning peer network and family leadership initiative for parents of young children with disabilities and delays in their development. It aims to provide an opportunity for families to inform, support and motivate each other to aim high and see new opportunities for their child now and in the future. Since 2015, 190 parents have taken part in this evidence-based 8-week group program and we are on track to reach 340 by June 2018. The program is delivered by paid peer facilitators who receive training and leadership development to support their effective work with families.
Before the group program commences, families engage in a vision building process using a new innovative planning resource developed by Plumtree called Pictability. This fun, engaging process helps families to see new possibilities and helps them to set goals for their child, family and themselves.
Families then prioritize one goal for themselves, one for their family and one for their child. They bring these into the eight-week group program where they use a range of resources to help them take their goal into action, while also sharing ideas and strategies with other families.
A custom designed mindfulness colouring-in book accompanies the course to provide families with an opportunity to slow down and reflect on how things are going with implementing their vision.
Families record information and progress using photos, video, audio and text in a customised App which focuses on celebrating successes and reflecting on next steps. This book becomes their story which they can share with family, friends and professionals. More on the e-Book here: http://bookcreator.com/blog/2016/01/book-creator-helps-transform-experience-families-affected-disability/
Once each group of families have completed the Now and Next course, they become connected with the Now and Next Alumni. This group then continues to meet face to face and through various technology-based mechanisms in order to inform, support and motivate each other to aim high and see new opportunities for their child now and in the future. The Network’s collective agenda and long-term vision are to “build a social movement to inspire a new generation of parents of young children with disabilities to lead their family’s progress, drawing from a sustainable and deeply embedded peer-networked foundation of knowledge, capacity and creativity”.
For more information on the Now and Next Alumni blog click on the link: http://now-and-next-alumni.blogspot.com