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Family Life Ministry - Diocese of Leeds
Outreach Search for Schools in the Diocese of Leeds:    

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Supporting parents as the first educators of their children

"It doesn't matter how much money we put into education if parents don't parent." Barack Obama 

What can we do to make a positive difference for parents and for children? 

Family Life Ministry used Celebrating Family Funding to train Parenting Facilitators to run parenting programmes through their local school or parish community. The Family Caring Trust (FCT) Programmes www.familycaring.co.uk we use are wonderfully affirming for parents and grandparents as well as being life changing for their children.



  • So far 43 volunteers have been trained in different parishes and schools in the diocese.


Example: Wakefield Deanery September 2011- summer 2012. Nineteen people, including parents, grandparents, support workers, parishioners and Catholic Care social workers completed theParenting Programmes: leading with confidence course. This deanery initiative is a model of how our local church - parishes, schools and homes working together - can make a significant difference in children's lives. We do this by engaging parents positively as the primary educators of their children, complementing, and preparing for, the more formal education our Catholic schools deliver.

If you would like to find out more about Parenting Facilitator training for your school, parish or, better still, deanery, please contact me 0113 261 8050 (Tuesdays only)

"Parenting classes can be life-changing because they give parents the skills to manage challenging situations, give their children clear and firm boundaries and help them learn the consequences of their actions. This strengthens families and means children are better behaved, more respectful and can achieve more at school."

Sarah Teather Minister for Education Sept 2012


What can Family Life Ministry do for schools?

Our main focus is on positive relationship education and parenting.

Primary Schools



  • Parenting Facilitator Training: FCT approved Initial Training (one day) or accredited ‘Parenting Programmes: leading with confidence'
  • Home School Parish workshops: from September 2004 to November 2005 we made 19 visits to primary schools throughout the diocese meeting representatives of almost every school and their home and parish communities. Since then the initiative has focused on practical support and training for schools and parishes which have requested it
  • Bereavement support
  • Transition support for year 6



High School and beyond


  • Parenting Facilitator Training: FCT approved Initial Training (one day) or accredited ‘Parenting Programmes: leading with confidence'
  • The Young Adult Assertiveness Programme


Eight weekly sessions to help young adults, aged fifteen and upwards, to learn the same respectful skills as their parents (if they attend a parenting programme!). This will help reinforce change within the family system. The emphasis is on growth in self confidence, saying ‘no' to peer pressure and finding fairer, less aggressive ways of dealing with problems.

The handbook for students and accompanying video proved to be valuable teaching aids. These made the course easy to deliver and helped to make the teachers piloting the course confident (and assertive!) from the start.

 Training in the delivery of this material in schools is available and twilight or training day sessions can be arranged for whole school or designated teachers.


Sixth Forms


  • Parenting Facilitator Training: FCT approved Initial Training (one day) or accredited ‘Parenting Programmes: leading with confidence'
  • ‘What will I do with my Life' workshops on the vocation of marriage and family life
  • The Young Adult Assertiveness programme (as above)



Visits to schools can be arranged on request

 For bereavement support, including Rainbows, contact Marjorie Parker

 Marjorie is our support worker and schools outreach worker. She is will visit to discuss any aspect of relationship education in your school and can train teachers in the use of any of the above programmes. Marjorie is also a Registered Director for Rainbows, an international organisation to support bereaved pupils.


See Also The Wednesday Word 

Created from an original idea by Dannie Firth of St Austin's church, Wakefield, in the Diocese of Leeds,

The Wednesday Word is an exciting new initiative to evangelise families through our Catholic schools, connecting home, school and parish by spreading the Gospel to families.

The principle is simple and effective: every family receives, from their children's primary school, a sheet every week with a couple of short reflections and prayers.


To find out more go to their website: www.wednesdayword.org

The Wednesday Word is dedicated to St Joseph, patron saint of families.

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