What Role Can Friends Play?
As a trusted friend, you're often the one parents turn to when they feel scared, depressed, or overwhelmed - or to share moments of joy. You see a lot.
Listening well is so important. Sometimes, it’s the most important thing we do.
Asking “How can I help?” and “What do you need?” can go a long way.
What Can You Do?
Parenting is challenging at times (and sometimes very often) – for all parents.
Acknowledging this and offering support makes it easier for parents to accept help. Offer resources, such as Lane Kids and Parenting Now! Catholic Community Services’s Family Support and Connections service can help put parents in touch with a variety of providers.
Help to reduce silence and isolation. Be that person people reach out to for support.
In Lane County, 47% of survivors of child abuse and neglect said no one helped them at the time they were first being mistreated, and 19% said they were rarely helped. Be that person people reach out to for support.
Offer to babysit for a friend’s children so that parents can enjoy a night off.
Donate items to the Welcome Baby Box program in your region.
If you’ve watched friends have kids (or have kids of your own), you know how important the first few months of an infant’s life can be. Connecting parents to resources and supporting them with physical needs is crucial.
Get to know the families that live around you.
Meet the kids and talk to the parents so that they know you are there if they ever need help. Social connection and social support are the cornerstones of family well-being and child safety.
“Fill in” for a family member when they can’t attend their child’s recital or soccer game.
Contribute to concrete support for families.
Learn how to intervene in a situation where you are concerned about domestic violence.
Encourage your local school to adopt Roots of Empathy.
This groundbreaking program teaches first- and second-graders compassion and reduces bullying through interactions with an infant.
Gain confidence in knowing what to do when you are concerned about a child.
Find out what others have done when faced with a tricky situation in What Would We Do? Lane County, a video put together by local volunteers. (Coming soon!)
Join the 90by30 Regional Leadership Team in your community.
Help create safe, nurturing communities for your family, your friends’ families, and others’ families.
Learn about how to support a survivor of abuse, neglect and healing resources.
Find out more at Lane County’s Trauma Healing Project.
Be a resource to families.
Get to know resources in your area so you can be a source of information for families - including your friends. Help connect parents with specific needs to the appropriate organization. Offer to contact the group yourself to make reaching out less intimidating. Parenting Now!’s resource guide offers a wealth of information on everything from mental health to financial assistance.