Empowering Parents in Humanitarian Settings: 4 Must-Have Resources for Support and Resilience on Global Day of Parents

Our parents are the foundation upon which we stand. They have nurtured and guided us throughout our lives, showering us with unconditional love and sacrificing their own needs for our happiness. Their wisdom and experience are invaluable, offering stability and comfort during turbulent times.

In humanitarian settings, parents often bear the weight of multiple responsibilities. They must navigate unfamiliar environments, protect their children, and provide for their basic needs, all while facing immense challenges. It’s easy for the needs of parents to be overshadowed. Yet, their wellbeing is fundamental to the health and resilience of families and communities.

As a global community, we must step forward and support these resilient parents, ensuring they have access to vital resources, healthcare, mental health and psychosocial support, and opportunities for personal growth.

Here are our four favourite resources to support the wellbeing of parents in humanitarian settings:


1- Parenting on the Move: 

Program for empowerment and promoting the development of competencies of parents of children up to 12 years of age, in situations of migrations and refugeehood Package.

The Parenting on the Move (PoM) programme package has been developed to support families to provide the necessary conditions for well-being, resilience, and education of children up to 12 years of age, in situations of migration/refugeehood. The programme has three components: parent workshops, family workshops (led by trained moderators), and materials for activities that parents and children can engage in, in a family setting. It can be implemented by moderators (activists, experts, students) trained for its implementation. The moderators need to know the programme’s thematic fields, have experience in facilitating group work with adults and group work with adults and children together and also need to have empathy and developed communication skills. As a programme package, PoM provides a comprehensive framework for implementation through a) training of the facilitators of the workshops; b) mentoring through the implementation; c) monitoring and evaluation.

The programme package consists of: • Moderator’s handbook with workshop program • Material for the families: “POM NOTES TO GO” and “POM GAMES TO GO”, • Handbook for trainers and mentors.

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2- The Caring for Caregiver training package: 

The Caring for Caregiver training package aims to build front-line workers’ skills in strengths-based counselling to increase caregivers’ confidence and help them develop stress management, self-care and conflict-resolution skills to support their emotional well-being. The package consists of three core manuals to guide the training and implementation process. A new guide on Caring for the Caregiver during the COVID-19 crisis aims to provide evidence-based messages, practical guidance, case studies and resources that can be used to promote parents’ and caregivers’ mental health, with a focus on adolescent caregivers.

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3- The Nurturing the Spiritual Development of Children Toolkit:

The Nurturing the Spiritual Development of Children Toolkit is designed to help equip faith actors to engage actively in the protection of children from violence in early childhood and the promotion of children’s holistic well-being by supporting parents, caregivers, educators and communities to nurture children’s spiritual development and take an active role in addressing violence in early childhood. The Toolkit is tailored for organizations — faith-based organizations, religious communities, or other civil society organizations interested in the spiritual development of children — and is designed to complement holistic development approaches and to be integrated into existing parenting, education and/ or ECD programs. The Toolkit presents a Learning Program for Adults as well as Activities for Children.

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4- Young Children in Crisis Settings 6: Why Supporting Caregivers’ Mental Health in Crisis Settings is Essential for Young Children’s Holistic Development: 

The Young Children in Crisis Settings brief highlights the importance of supporting caregivers’ mental health in crisis settings to young children’s holistic development. It presents data on the severity of the global mental health crisis, which is being exacerbated by the lack of funding for psychosocial support for children, youth, and families. The brief focuses on why caregivers’ mental health matters in crisis settings and why it is critical to invest in and prioritize caregivers’ well-being and support in conflict and crisis-affected areas. It shares Illustrative examples of evidence-based interventions, that adopt a whole family approach to promote the mental health and psychosocial wellbeing of caregivers, responsive caregiving, and early learning; and how humanitarian workers promote and protect the mental health and psychosocial well-being of caregivers.

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Today, let’s unite in recognizing the unique challenges faced by parents in humanitarian settings and pledge our support for their wellbeing.

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