An alternative form of dispute resolution
We help parents work in the best interests of their children
We help and support parents when they need it the most
The voice of the child is at the heart of everything we do.
The Parenting Apart Programme supports parents who are going through divorce or separation where relationships have broken down or in conflict. The unique structure of the programme has been created to centrally focus the minds of parents on the psychological needs of their children. It achieves this through a strengths-based, attachment-focused commitment to the prioritisation of the mental health and emotional well-being of children impacted by parental separation and divorce.
We achieve this through a core structured 4 week programme which enables parents to explore their family challenges, initially individually, (1 session each), and subsequently jointly, (3 sessions), learning how to communicate as parents, to form a respectful parent working relationship, that results in a Parent Working Agreement which both parents agree to abide by. This can be filed alongside any court order if relevant.
The Agreement details how the parents will work together to support the child’s wishes, emotional and physical wellbeing covering practical issues including transition of care, contact arrangements, residency, holidays, hand overs, and schooling. Parents retain responsibility for decision making related to their children’s futures, as opposed to court directed, third party decision making.
In addition to the core programme, our Parenting Apart Programme Practitioners are trained to support parents to practically overcome common challenges that arise after an agreement has been made. For example, they can attend the initial contact handover sessions with parents, role-modelling appropriate behaviour and language, involving children whenever appropriate.
Families can access the programme immediately at an accessible cost. This saves family time and the cost of a lengthy court process and facilitates children having contact with non-resident parent. We overcome practical barriers to accessing and completing the programme through, for example, accessible cost and sessions available outside working hours, including at weekends, to facilitate childcare and avoid loss of working hours.
The programme can be accessed before, during and after court proceedings. Parents who complete the programme can self-certify to courts that they have completed alternative dispute mediation. Our accredited practitioners can provide reports requested by the Court, for example, parent attendance and work undertaken.
Where parents qualify for referral to the Separated Parents Information Programme, the Parenting Apart Programme can be used as a more effective alternative, or if appropriate, offered after SPIP attendance where resolution has not been achieved. The Parenting Apart Programme is predominantly designed to save families time and cost within the court proceeding.
We currently receive a referral from the Courts, Legal Professionals, Mediators, Health Professionals, Schools, Children Social Services, NYAS, Child Contact Centres and Cafcass. Parents can also self-refer directly to us.
The Parent Working Agreement developed can be filed with the Court. Our Practitioners can provide reports requested by the Court, for example, parent attendance and work undertaken. If they are required to act as an Expert Witness we require a direction from the Court and outline of the schedule of work to be undertaken before any intervention is considered.
The Parenting Apart Programme has been developed by Sarah Morgan BA (Hons), PGDipEd, MCMI, NPQH, M.Psychol, MBPsS
Principal Trustee: Shropshire Academy and Learning Trust (SALT)
The Parenting Apart Programme, offers a unique methodological approach in supporting parents to achieve a positive working relationship after a decision has been made to separate or divorce.
The Parenting Apart Programme pedagogy and practitioner training has been developed with a people, programme and process core, interwoven with an ethically principled and compassionate design. The design is both programme and process based with a clear focus on relationships and systemic family support through positive change.
It recognises that change can occur through the formation of a trusted and healthy working relationship with a highly-skilled, empathetic and child-focused Parenting Apart Practitioner. The evidence base behind the programme includes:
- Neuroscientific Research
- Neuroscientific Approaches including Attachment and Developmental Trauma
- Brain development
- Child development
The Attachment and Relationship-based Practice provides our Practitioner/Consultants with a thorough understanding of key attachment-related concepts including mentalization, unresolved loss and trauma and disconnected parenting, as well as the skills to help and support families effectively. This approach is particularly helpful for teaching parents ways to react that improve children’s psychological and brain development and parent-child relationships.
Call us in confidence
t 01562 700447
15-17 Church Street, Stourbridge, West Midlands, DY8 1LU