Biala helps parents recover ‘their time’

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Flying high: Kirsten plays with Banjo on the swing at Biala. Picture: Gary Sissons

Flying high: Kirsten plays with Banjo on the swing at Biala. Picture: Gary Sissons

PARENTS of children with disabilities, developmental delays or a chronic medical condition are being encouraged to make contact with Biala Peninsula based in Mornington.

The free group, in Elizabeth St, allows parents to unwind and talk about their experiences. A trained facilitator helps guide the discussion, share experiences and connect parents with support services.

A skilled play helper engages children below school age so parents and carers are free to chat with each other. “Research tells us that many parents of children with disabilities struggle to find time to look after themselves, and that social isolation is a real danger,” National MyTime director Annette Michaux said.

“The groups meet every few weeks and help parents cope with challenges, share positive experiences, navigate support services and achieve an increased sense of wellbeing.

“There are 200 MyTime groups around Australia and 90 per cent of parents who use this free support service are satisfied or highly satisfied with how their groups are run.”

MyTime groups such as Biala Peninsula are open to any parent or carer of a child – up to 16 years of age – with a disability, developmental delay or a chronic medical condition.

Children below school age can attend groups with their parent or carer. The Biala Peninsula group is coordinated by Playgroup Victoria and interested parents can find out more by visiting mytime.net.au

MyTime funding is provided by the Australian Government Department of Social Services. The Parenting Research Centre coordinates the program nationally.

Fortnightly Monday afternoon sessions are 12.15-3.15pm at Elizabeth St, Mornington. The next session is Monday 21 March.

Parents are asked to book a place on 5975 1820.

First published in the Mornington News – 8 March 2016

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