Ballarat MCH Sleep and Settling Information Groups assist early parenting

The City of Ballarat’s new Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Sleep and Settling Information Groups are playing a crucial role in helping to support local families with early parenting.

The State Government funded initiative has been supported by the City of Ballarat MCH Program and is free to parents.

City of Ballarat Deputy Mayor, Councillor Amy Johnson, said Council has provided specific sleep and settling training for the MCH nurse team, venue support and the promotion and communication of the Sleep and Settling Information Groups with families.

“The MCH Sleep and Settling Information Groups program is critical to any parent needing the knowledge and assistance to settle their child,” she said.

“Whether understanding typical sleep patterns, or more detail on child settling behaviours relative to their child’s development, the program offers a range of strategies that will help optimise sleep habits for babies and young children.”

The sessions are targeted to two key age groups, 6-12-month-old babies and 18-24-month-old toddlers, and the free sessions run for up to 90 minutes.

City of Ballarat Community Wellbeing Director, Matthew Wilson said the MCH program has followed specific advice from the Chief Health Officer relating to the continuation of offering MCH Sleep and Settling parent groups during the pandemic.

Where COVID-19 has prevented attendance in person, participants have been given the option of completing an online session.

“Whether in person or even online during the pandemic, increasing the support in early parenting through building the knowledge of a child’s sleep patterns can significantly influence a family’s wellbeing,” Mr Wilson said.

“Early feedback to the Maternal and Child Health program has been outstanding with nothing but praise for the service delivery and results.”

MCH Sleep and Settling Information Groups remain open for bookings with dates and details available from the City of Ballarat website. Where possible, sessions will be offered in a face-to-face forum from Lucas Community Hub site.

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