Parents the channel for positive change

Parents the channel for positive change

Letterkenny, IrelandCounty Wide, Ireland
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
Growth
Budget: 
$100,000 - $250,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Parentstop Ltd is a not-for-profit company based in Co Donegal ireland, supporting parents when and where they need it. A free and confidential service for parents offers a listening ear, advice and support for families. Parentstop believes that parents are the change makers for our future - responsible for parenting the next generation.

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

Offering supports to families now and when they need it. Whether it is a struggle to meet the bills, stress over feul poverty, challenges in communicating with their teenager, trying to agree on how to co-parent when the relationship has failed, concerns about substance misuse, routine for baby or toddler - whatever is faced as a parent Parentstop is here to listen to you, support you and work it out with you. This is a free and confidential support service that is helping parents to makes the changes needed - building their resilience as change makers. Parentstop offers an immediate and short-term support system and explores with each parent how to sustain this within the community in the medium and longer term.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

One to One support for parents - listening and tailoring support as needed every step of the way. Parentstop has a well developed one-to-one approach for parents contacting the service and offers appointments in service locations closest to where parents live/work/are. Parentstop is at full capacity - at the edge of growth and expansion and must explore other channels for communications with parents - how to join the dots and make the connections - collaborating with other services and supports, using the airwaves, offering apps, on-line and phone support, texting, seminars, workshops, programmes....whatever is needed to build a support infrastructure. Parentstop is positioned to be the initiator however success will be determined by partner participation and collaborative ways of working involving parents who have received support and built resilience.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Parents may have seen our flyers, Google our website, taken the number from one of our posters, been told by a friend or family members about the service, recommended to come by their child's school, their GP, the Public Health Nurse, their social worker, the Community Mental Health Worker, their solicitor or a local Garda or were just passing by. Parents usually make contact by phoning one of our numbers and talk about their challenge over the phone and agree an appointment at a location that works for them. Some drop in when they see the sign. We have a number of partners who allow us to use space for these appointments). The Parent usually comes alone for the initial appointment and the challenges are talked out. Depending on the challenges faced advice and information may be provided, a referral to another service may be recommended and a further appointment will be set in some cases with the partner and/or child concerned. The key is listening and offering a safe and secure space to talk it out. Usually parents need no more than 5 appointments and leave Parentstop with a refocused parenting approach and built up resilience in how they parent. In addition may have been advised to see a counsellor, therapist, GP, legal advisor, money advice service, citizen's advice, etc. Parent's do come back to tell us how it's going and many feed into our evaluation and feedback process. the biggest return is that they tell someone else about the service and more parents come for support.
Sustainability

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

Our Peers are primarily parent s and their families but also Health and community organisations working to support families in Co Donegal. Our competitors are other Parent Support Services - but we would see them as collaborators and tend to work with them to offer complimentary services rather than duplication and reinvention of the proverbial wheel. It's about underpinning parenting - ensuring the safety net is there when needed. For example www.Parentline.ie offers a national helpline number for parents wanting support over the phone. We have recently linked with them and hope to offer a joint platform of support during National Parents Week in October 2012. We promote their helpline and they offer our details to parents from this area contact them. It's Win Win - not competition.
Team

Founding Story

In 2005 at a parenting group session one of the co-founders delivering the session was asked if she could stay back to meet some of the group on a one-to-one. After a quick chat parents identified that it was great to get it out of their heads and talk it out....She set appointments with them over the following days, talked to a freind within the Health services the next day and both are still actively involved to this day.
About You
Organization:
Parentstop Ltd
About You
First Name

Patricia

Last Name

Lee

About Your Organization
Organization Name

Parentstop Ltd

Organization Country

, DG, Letterkenny

Country where this project is creating social impact

, DG, County Wide

Age of Innovator

Over 34

Gender of Innovator

Female

How long has your organization been operating?

More than 5 years

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Innovation
How long have you been in operation?

Operating for more than 5 years

Social Impact
What solution(s) does your initiative address to help emerging entrepreneurs and small businesses grow and thrive in underserved communities? (select all applicable)

Access to talent, Policy change/advocacy.

What has been the impact of your solution to date?

in 2011 635 parents received one-to-one face-to-face support at Parentstop and a further 200 over the phone. Parentstop is growing it's collaborative approaches locally, regionally and nationally.

What is your projected impact over the next 1-3 years?

Year 1 - Over 1500 parents supported directly per year with a range of conduits for that support developed and piloted.
Year 2 - over 2000 parents supported directly per year with a range of conduits evaluated and adapted as needed and a number of high profile media outings.
Year 3 - All parents know they can access support through whatever conduit suits their needs - the word is out there

What barriers might hinder the success of your project? How do you plan to overcome them?

Not asking parents for their feedback and their involvement
Thinking too local and too small
Not nurturing collaborative approaches to ensure the dots all get joined and a map is available for parents

Winning entries present a strong plan for how they will achieve and track growth. Identify your six-month milestone for growing your impact

1000 parents supported directly

Identify three major tasks you will have to complete to reach your six-month milestone
Task 1

Media presence at county level

Task 2

National profile building commenced

Task 3

Strategic alliance with Parentline and other family support services

Now think bigger! Identify your 12-month impact milestone

a further 500 parents supported directly

Identify three major tasks you will have to complete to reach your 12-month milestone
Task 1

National media presence and socail networking presence

Task 2

recruitment drive of parent supporters

Task 3

All open for business and linked through a clear referral and care pathway

Sustainability
Tell us about your partnerships

We are completely open to collaboration.At a local and county level we have linked into Family Support Networks and become active members. We have linked into drug and alcohol, Health and Primary Care networks building a profile and relationships with services and support systems.

Please elaborate on any needs or offers you have mentioned above and/or suggest categories of support that aren't specified within the list

We need to build and grow our profile and needs support with this to take us up in the helicopter and plan the next stages.
Investment in our communications infrastructure would be critical to this.
Mentoring in developing a service level contract approach would be hugely beneficial.
I worked as a Research and Development Entrepreneur for 10 years before joining Parentstop.

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