The truth is we are in families with varying numbers of biological, adoptive, step and foster siblings as well as parents: we care with grave responsibility for children who are not ‘our own’ but God’s, however they have arrived and for however long we are together.
We have other sorts too; the family of faith, which we have heard argued should be stronger than the dna one! Some would say there is a family that grows up from their shared experiences such as sporting or leisure interests, living in an area; there is the family of the human race.
We do not have to look far to see that families are in difficulties and feel hard-pressed on many sides.There are difficulties in: relationships, communications, understanding and working with our differences; money, food, housing, jobs; age, health, language, culture, values – even technology and screen time!
When families get into hard times it is good to know where to find help. Here are just a few that we know which have a proven track record.
Single Mums. Single dads. Couples. New parents. Time together. Toddlers and play; Parents in prison. (Did you know that there are 200,000 youngsters with a parent in prison? Source CftF magazine 2015, from Ministry of Justice)
Training courses, holidays, stories, tips, magazine, gatherings, resources to purchase - on all of these!
for widowed young support add /wys
bereaved parent support add /bps
Adopted Families are increasingly a part of our local community. There is a parent-led group (i.e. no direct involvement from Social workers) called 'We are family'. The East London branch includes Newham, Waltham Forest, Tower Hamlets, Barking & Dagenham, and Redbridge holds fortnightly parent support groups and sporadic family events.
'There is also a pan-London group for prospective adopters and single adopters and a weekly blog.
To become a member of the East London group, anyone can e-mail . Prospective adopters can join but need to have been approved and with a named social worker. The parent support group is only for adoptive parents.
Restored is a Christian alliance to transform relationships and end violence against women.
Christian churches have huge potential to help prevent violence, but many of us also need to change our own attitudes and practice. The specific focus of Restored is the prevention of domestic violence and sexual violence against women and girls.
Why bother: how real is this? 167 women are raped every day in the UK!
According to the Secretary-General's in-depth study on violence against women (2006) (A/61/122/Add.1)
Violence against women is the most common but least punished crime in the world.
At least one out of every three women has been beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused in her lifetime. Usually, the abuser is a member of her own family or someone known to her. Domestic violence is the largest form of abuse of women worldwide, irrespective of region, culture, ethnicity, education, class and religion.
What does it mean to walk in restored, sanctified relationships? We like this study which helps us examine our own attitudes and beliefs wherever we are from. It is called New Man, New Woman, New Life. you can find out more about this by clicking here
For more infomation on Restored, click here
Other organisations working around domestic violence in Newham include
NIA which is LBN's commissioned Independent Domestic & Sexual Violence Advocacy Service http://www.niaendingviolence.org.uk/rape/
London Black Women's Organisation (IS based in Newham)
Tel 020 8472 0528
One Stop Shop in Newham
addressing domestic violence, sexual abuse, FGM, threats and emotional abuse
0845 451 2547
AANCHAL women’s Aid.
24 hr helpline 0845 451 2547
Alternatives Trust is run by Christians and offers support to all with
Advocacy for families
Alternatives Trust can offer a free pregnancy test, information about pregnancy options and confidential support.
Alternatives Trust are open to referrals from any agency and individuals are very welcome to contact us directly.
Thier services are free and we adhere to the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) codes of ethics and practice.
If you have had a positive result from a test they can offer unbiased information and time and space for you to work through your feelings at your own pace. Whatever decision you make, they can offer support, practical assistance and signpost to other organisations.
If you have experienced a miscarriage or a stillbirth they can support you through the grieving process, offering support to you and your partner for as long as you need.
If you are troubled following an abortion, whether it was recent or many years ago, you are welcome to come and talk with a trained and experienced practitioner. Alternatives Trust offer a post abortion course which enables you to work through your feelings at your own pace.
For more infomation on Alternatives, click here
We are Family Club
No matter what our situation or background, as parents there may be times when we need support.
We Are Family is a place for parents to bring their children, where they can have fun in a relaxed environment, spend some time talking with other parents, learn new parenting skills and gain confidence.
Refreshments and a crèche are provided.
Is a group that is run by dads for dads, whether you live with your partner or children; it's open to all. 4Dads usually meets on Wednesday or Thursday evenings from 6.30 – 9.30pm for support, activities, food, fun and encouragement.
For more infomation on Alternatives, click here
Drink and drugs: do your kids know more than you?
Hope UK’s voluntary Drug Educators are trained to provide interactive and age-appropriate drug and alcohol education sessions to different age groups in a wide range of settings, from schools to youth groups to parents’ associations. Games and activities are used to deliver information in a way that is engaging and thought-provoking.
Sessions are designed in accordance with best practice guidelines as determined by the Drug Education Forum and organisations like the EMCDDA (European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction).
For more infomation on Hope UK, click here
Newham Talking Therapies service
Newham Talking Therapies service offers a range of free and confidential talking therapies and specialist support to help you feel better. It also provides workshops, courses, groups and individual treatment at various locations.
For more infomation on Newham Talking Therapies service, click here