How to be a better Father.
There are many Latinos in Minneapolis, Minnesota and there is a special place called Urban Ventures that helps Latino parents improve their interactions with their children. The program that I am going to focus on is the “Siempre Padres” (Parents Forever). According to Susana Espinosa de Sygulla, the director of Latino Programs, Siempre Padres is a twelve hour long program that teaches Latino parents how to develop effective parenting skills, build close relationships among family members, and lower the risk of domestic violence and domestic abuse.
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The main focus of Siempre Padres is the father. They emphasize the importance of the role of the father in the family and how they can improve their relationship with other members of the family. The Urban Venture website claims that Siempre Padres “shows parents how to apologize, correct, and identify the real needs of their children.” This program helps fathers to increase the amount of time they spend with their kids, to minimize behavior problems in kids, and to improve communication within family. Siempre Padres has different sessions in which fathers finish the program. The curriculum is just twelve hours worth of classes. But, as Espinosa de Sygulla points out, “Some parents joined the class for more than thirty weeks and continued to come for the knowledge, wisdom, and fellowship.”
Alejandro Hernandez, a “Siempre Padres,” said, “This program has helped me have a better relationship with my children, have better communication with my wife, be a better person, have patience, change bad habits for good ones, raise my children without violence and to help them by motivating them. It has taught me to try to give quality time to each member of my family. We have grown together as a family.”
Siempre Padres is not just a program for men. Gumencinda Ramirez, a mother who attended Siempre Padres, has four kids, two girls and two boys. She thought that her family was perfect, until her two girls started to act out. She heard about the program through a friend and decided to try it out. She said, ” I have been attending the Wednesday program for over ten weeks and started seeing some different behavior in my kids on the second week an improvement in our communication. It also changed my view on how we should relate to each other and now I am more active in starting conversations with them. Thanks to the support of the program Forever Fathers and its advice, now I know when I am supposed to be the mother and when I can be the friend.”
Siempre Padres has clearly help many Latino parents but everyone can join.
To learn more about Urban Ventures visit, www.urbanventures.org.