By Captain Mariam Rudd –
Innovative programming is happening through Women’s Ministries at the Redlands, Calif., Corps. The Parish Nurses Department of the Redlands Community Hospital contacted The Salvation Army in Redlands and asked if they could join the Army in helping provide training for people who needed additional life skills to survive as individuals and as families. The answer–Yes, we need Christian nurses. When can you start?”
The first program began–a four-week course on parenting skills taught by Parish Nurse Betty Wheeler. Weekly sessions included: “How not to be a volcano or a wimp,” “Setting Limits,” “Consequences,” and “Self-esteem.”
The course proved to be so effective that Home League members started bringing their friends, neighbors, and husbands. Soon the classes began to grow. It was amazing–families began communicating; children and teenagers were learning respect; family councils were established in homes. Communication was happening among parents and children. Husbands and wives became involved in cooperative and supportive parenting of their children.
Comments by some of the individuals attending the seminar include:
Ellen Snyder, grandmother: “I am a baby-sitting grandmother. I especially appreciated the emphasis on respecting the child as a person and keeping a balanced view of his/her behavior. I am using some of the new methods I’ve learned in dealing with my grandson–positive reinforcement of desired behavior, time outs, and redirecting energy and attention away from negative and disruptive behavior. It really works!”
Delissa Quezada, single parent: “As a single parent raising two daughters, I really benefited from the class. I learned how not to yell at my daughters; to listen to what they were saying; how to avoid being demanding; to give time outs; and to teach them about Jesus. I also learned I can’t just be my children’s friend, I need to be their mother. Our family is becoming healthy and I am excited about the future.”
Kitty and Mike Delgado, traditional family: “My husband and I both come from abusive backgrounds. We were looking for a different kind of discipline other than hitting or screaming. The parenting classes held at The Salvation Army taught us about consequences and how to “act” rather than “react.” We are learning how to be good, loving parents. We believe we have broken the chain of abuse in our family, by admitting our need for help and taking what we’ve learned and applying it to our family’s needs. I thank God for our class and for The Salvation Army.”
Tara Kelgard, expectant mother: “The parenting class has helped me become more aware of my actions and what I need to change so that I can be a better parent and mother.”
Benny and Nancy Santistvban, traditional family (stepfather): “My husband and I have seven children and found the parenting classes to be very helpful in the area of gaining respect from the children. We’ve discovered we don’t need to ‘blow up’ and lose our tempers. These classes have been the best thing we’ve done as a couple and as a family.