What is Family Participation and Why is it Important?
What is family participation? If you are wondering this, you have come to the right place. This article will help you to understand the definition of family participation, the effect of family participation and how to encourage family participation.
You must have come across the term family participation a few times at your workplace as well as in the educational institutes of your children. Family participation has always been important, but it has come into the spotlight even more in recent times. Families have become smaller and consist of only parents and children. This makes family participation even more crucial. Here is all you need to know about family participation.
What is Family Participation?
Family participation is when each member of a family participates in the health and well-being of another member of the family. For instance, family participation in mental health services. It is said that when families participate in the treatment of individuals with mental health issues, they respond better.
Similarly, family participation child care is an important part of parenting that helps children grow up to be socially aware, responsible and healthy human beings. This is the reason family participation in schools, as well as daycare, are encouraged.
Effect of Family Participation on All Family Members
Family participation in early childhood has a huge impact on cognitive growth in infants. Researches have shown that kids who attend preschool and have families that actively participate in their education learn faster, are more active and show more potential. This is the reason daycare centres and preschools often organize activities that include parents to participate with their children.
When it comes to toddlers and older children, it has been scientifically proven that kids who have families that participate in their education perform better at school. This is why schools encourage family participation by holding regular parent and teacher meetings as well as activities, where the presence of parents are must for having open communication with parents.
Even in teenagers and young adults, the effect of family participation has been noticed prominently. The teenagers who have a very involved family tend to be more confident and socially aware than young adults who have families that are distant from each other. Problems such as drug abuse, criminal activities and bullying have been noticed in youth who have families that are not active participants in their lives.
Family participation plays a major role in the lives of adults as well. Effect of family participation on different individuals with health issues has shown that such individuals respond much better to treatments if their families are present and participate in their treatment. And, this is true for note just family participation for mental health issues, but for other physical health problems as well. It has been noted that stroke patients who have lost their mobility respond much better to physiotherapy sessions if their family members are present during the treatment sittings.
Encourage Family Participation – How You Can Go About Doing it?
Family participation is crucial since the very beginning of starting a family. As soon as your child is born, connect with them through secure attachments. Play with them, laugh with them and be available to their needs at all times. This is the start that would encourage family participation in your children as well.
Once your child reaches the stage of staring in their education, make sure you be as involved as possible in every stage of their learning activities. If your child attends a preschool, know what the school’s standpoint is regarding family participation in early childhood education. Even if the school doesn’t have any such family participation programs, you must ensure that you get involved in your child’s education. Sit with them to teach them at home, tell them stories with educational content and ask them questions regarding what they have learnt to encourage family participation.
It is not as easy to connect with older children who sometimes refuse to talk about their lives with their parents. However, if you have been successful in forging a close bond with your child right through from their infant stage, it might be easier. If they have family participation programs in schools such as parent-teacher meetings or some fun activities that involve parents and children doing things together, make sure you do not miss them. Also, enquire about how their education is going on as well as their lives, in general, to stay involved. Take a genuine interest in what they do and listen when they talk. These are sure shot ways to encourage family participation among all members of the family.
Even if your children are all grown up and stay away from you, participation in family life can still be a thing. The trick is to find a balance between appearing intruding or interfering and being there whenever a member of your family needs you. If you have encouraged and practised family participation since your children were young, it should not be a problem to continue it even when your children have moved on with their lives.
Why is Family Participation Important?
Family participation is important to forge and protect the internal loving bond a family shares among its members. A strong family ensures that every member has the ability to handle stress and face the world strongly because they know they have a family they can always go back to. In health and illness family participation and communication can help each member of the family tide over.
It is especially true now when the stress is so high among the youth. With active family participation, they can learn to handle the stress well and emerge a winner. Studies show that individuals with strong family participation are more successful than people who come from a dysfunctional family. Hence, make sure you encourage family participation at your home and practice the ways you can effectively participate in your family’s lives. Just follow the family participation guidelines mentioned above, and you should have a strongly bonded family who thrives together.