Our Stories

 

JANUARY 2016

 

Next Step Training

The graduation for 2015 was well attended with approximately 50 students and guests. Twenty-eight National Certificates were handed out to students for the 2015 year.  Lindsay Brown, a prominent Dunedin businessman and member of Dunedin Rotary, spoke as our guest speaker. Lindsay was known to most of our students as he and his fellow Rotarians volunteered their time, expertise and experience giving our students practise formal interviews and feedback about their CV’s, covering letters and interviews. After a blessing from one of the adult student’s grandfather, everyone had a fantastic meal that had been previously prepared by students, tutors, and staff.
 

Science Kids

Both Bathgate Park and Carisbrook Heights successfully completed the first Science Kids programme. The feedback from parents, teachers and students has been very positive. I caught up with the Social Workers in Schools before the Christmas break and they are keen for the programme to include the schools they are working with. Some of these are Pine Hill, Brockville, Carisbrook and Calton Hill. 
 
Practice Leader feedback:
  •  All the families and kids were really engaged in the experiments – the kids were clearly leading these and explaining/showing to their parents/siblings how and why the experiment worked.
  •  The kids interactions with each other was great – a lot of sharing, waiting for equipment, supporting other kids, and a lot of hilarity.
  •  One of the kids was reading a science experiment sheet out to his Mum – he appeared to have lower level of literacy but read through it well working out through a range of strategies what the sheet was saying. Rebecca said that his Mum has very little literacy.
  •  One family was using their phone to video their son who was conducting the experiment and talking through what was happening and why that was happening. Rebecca said that this family rarely came to anything as they were quite withdrawn and she was both rapt and surprised that they came to support their son at this.
  •  Science was clearly the vehicle for driving a whole lot of other things that were happening, including; positive family interactions, the kids being leaders, literacy development, social, sharing and problem solving interactions between the kids and parents being able to be really proud of their kids.
  •  The programme clearly a privilege for the kids.
 

Incredible Years

At the conclusion of the Incredible Years course in December, parents were really pleased with what they had learned. One parent said that the positive strategies she had learned had really turned the family atmosphere around and now there was no more shouting and the whole family was more relaxed. Another parent said that her daughter had stopped screaming at her when she wanted something and was responding really well to the limit setting and boundaries that had been put in place. Parents are really thinking about their parenting and working to change what they were doing to make it more effective for their children. 
 

Client Support Workers

A client came to enquire about the services we run, to see if he had any issues that would fit our service. This is an unusual approach, however, during our conversation it transpired he did indeed have an issue that we could support him with. When I explained our way of working, our PCOMS, and that we can measure our interactions to see if we are making a difference, he said he thought that was a little unusual but he would give it a go. Once the plan was created, he had a range of tasks to complete – he asked me several times to make phone calls for him, to complete paperwork and to organise resources - however I declined, offering him support to make his own phone calls using the office phone, assisting him with verbal support to complete the paperwork, and showing him how to access the information he needed on the internet. We reached his expected outcome after a couple of sessions. I asked him what worked well for him during this process, he said it was good having someone in the room with him during phone calls in case he lost his way, it was also good to have someone to de-jargon the questions in the paperwork, and he now feels a lot more confident that he can now also help his sister-in-law with her forms.
 
This was a great outcome, and was a good opportunity to ask him what went well, what went not so well. Initially he made the statement that Social Workers do stuff for you!  And has realized he has upskilled to the point he is able to help others.

 

Parenting Through Separation

When booking a woman onto Parenting Through Separation she was very vocal that she was against shared care with her ex-husband and his new partner. After the course I followed up with her. She had decided to do shared care as a result of the course. After chatting for a while CJ discovered as she had been a Mother for a long time and its was a lack of a social life that was holding her back. We talked about different groups she could join to meet new people. She felt better after this and was going to make some enquiries. 
 
A couple were considering getting back together and did the Parenting Through Separation course. They found the course very beneficial and decided that they would give their relationship another go. 
 
In Central Otago: Feedback is that the course is really beneficial and hearing other people’s stories helped put their own situation into perspective. Participants have exchanged numbers so they can keep in touch and support each other. Participants think the course would be very helpful in the very early stages of their separation rather than down the track.

 

INVERCARGILL / SOUTHLAND  

 

Brief Drink Driving Programme

Invercargill Drink Driving Course. 12 December 2015. There were 6 participants (3 men and 3 women) who all successfully completed the 6 hour course. They all engaged in the programme and all took part in the activities. The group had a strong reaction to some of the video clips shown, (one in particular is quite confronting) and there were good discussions after the clips. The Corrections officer who was overseeing the group also stated that she was learning too, and she also took part in many of the activities.  All comments from the participants and the Corrections team were very positive.

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