PRAMS service comes to Flintshire to support the wellbeing of parents

(Image: Vicky Holberry, who works on PRAMS, by Flintshire sign)

Mental health and wellbeing charity Advance Brighter Futures (ABF) is pleased to take its popular PRAMS (Parental Resilience And Mutual Support) service into the Flintshire area, as it looks to offer a helping hand to even more parents.

PRAMS is available to mothers and fathers who would like some additional support, particularly through the challenges of early parenthood. It has operated successfully in Wrexham over many years.

ABF recently received funding to bring PRAMS to Flintshire, and the service is currently available to anyone who lives in the Flintshire area.

It is a six-month pilot project to begin with, and the funding comes from Flintshire County Council, in partnership with Flintshire Local Voluntary Council, through the Welsh Government Transformation Fund.

“Anyone can be affected”

Lorrisa Roberts, Chief Officer at ABF, said: “The challenges of early parenthood are very real, and these can negatively affect a parent’s mental health and wellbeing. When this happens, the parent often won’t know where they can turn for help. We want them to know they can turn to us.

“Covid-19 has added to these challenges over the past months, and although it’s been a difficult time for everyone, we can’t ignore the impact the virus has had on parents who have been feeling a lot of pressure.

“Our message is ‘don’t feel embarrassed about what you are feeling and please use our support’. If you feel like you’re struggling, you’re definitely not alone – anyone can be affected. The most important thing is that you reach out to us.

“We know how helpful PRAMS can be, as we’ve seen it provide vital support to so many new and expectant parents, since 2014. We’re delighted that we can now expand PRAMS by bringing it to Flintshire, and help even more parents to deal with these challenges.”

How does PRAMS work?

PRAMS in Flintshire is offered through online support, including:

  • You & Your Bump – an online support group for expectant parents, once-a-week across five weeks
  • You & Your Baby – an online support group for new parents (with a baby up to 12 months old), once-a-week across six weeks
  • One-to-one Talking Therapies sessions online or over the phone, available to parents within children up to 16 years old
  • A monthly online support group
  • A Facebook support group

If you think you can benefit from any of these, you can complete a form, which is available through the ABF website.

If you would like some help completing the form, please don’t hesitate to contact us or you can ask your health visitor, midwife or GP.

The Early Help Hub in Flintshire can also assist you with this. If you would like their help please email Hub@flvc.org.uk

“You’ll all learn from each other”

Vicky Holberry, who works on PRAMS, said: “In the support groups we create an environment where the parents lead the discussion. If you’re expecting a child, it can be easy to think ‘am I going to be good enough?’, and then after your baby arrives, many other doubts can easily creep in.

“By sharing openly with people in the same situation – who’ll have many of the same doubts – you’ll find there’s nothing strange about what your experiencing at all, and you’ll all learn from each other. It really is a support network.”

“We provide a safe place”

Vicky added: “Others will benefit more through our one-to-one support, and this is provided by our Talking Therapies sessions. We always look to work with you, and agree what’s best for you as an individual first. Some people have told us we provide a safe place for them, and that shows just how important this service is.”

For more info on PRAMS, email info@abfwxm.co.uk or you can call us on 01978 364777 for an informal chat.

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