BCFS Health and Human Services-San Antonio celebrated the successful completion of the Precious Minds, New Connections (PMNC) program for around 60 parents who participated in the parenting education classes. To celebrate, PMNC lead instructor Patty Heredia organized a self-care trip for the graduates that included manicures and pedicures for both moms and dads.
PMNC workshops facilitated hands-on, creative group sessions where parents could share their parenting experiences, learn from one another’s stories and get practical advice on how to help children reach their full potential.
While 60 graduates participated in the celebratory trip to the nail salon, Heredia says around 90 parents successfully completed the last group of PMNC classes. One piece of the curriculum taught parents the importance of self-care as a way to be prepared to effectively and lovingly care for children.
“I now know a lot more about nurturing myself, and knowing that I have to take care of myself in order to take care of my kids,” explained single mom Bailee Hibba.
Mom Noemi Fraire, a self-employed business owner who completed the PMNC program, learned a calmer way to interact with her four kids.
“I realized that I was a yeller,” she admits. “And my kids are like sponges; that take up after everything I do. So if I yell at my kids without talking first, they yell at each other without talking first.”
After PMNC, she says she is more conscious of her volume at home.
“It’s overwhelming because I have kids of different ages, and its hard with all of them because they’re accustomed to that type of life, but I did catch myself doing that and it happens way less.”
Fraire said the PMNC class helped parents evaluate their parenting style and make some changes based on what they learn in class.
“Sometimes you don’t see these things yourself, but if somebody tells you ‘Do you do this? Or that?’ and you listen to other people in class, you might realize ‘Oh my gosh, I do do that!’”
PMNC lead instructor Patty Heredia earned kudos for her inclusive teaching style and use of examples from her own parenting experiences.
“With kids of her own, the instructor has real life experience and all the examples she gave of how we normally would react to certain situations were spot on,” said 22-year-old mom Kaitlyn Rodriguez.
“It showed me a lot about how I was approaching it (discipline) wrong and how I needed to change my approach to addressing the situation, first, and then the handle the discipline aspect, too.”
Each family also received a graduation gift in the form of household items like bedding, towels, lamps and blenders.
BCFS-San Antonio held its last PMNC classes in January 2017 after PMNC’s private funder opted to retire the program. All PMNC operations are scheduled to conclude by the end of February. However, BCFS-San Antonio still operates other parenting education services in Bexar County, including the state-funded Texas Families: Together and Safe (TFTS) program. BCFS-San Antonio has served more than 12,000 families through the PMNC program over the last 15 years.
For information about other parenting education services provided by BCFS-San Antonio, visit DiscoverBCFS.net/SanAntonio or call 210-233-5923.
BCFS is a global system of health and human service non-profit organizations with locations and programs throughout the United States as well as Eastern Europe, Latin America, Asia and Africa. The organization is a national leader in medical sheltering and emergency management and response, providing critical emergency support services to federal, state and local governments. BCFS also provides residential services and emergency shelters for children who are abused or neglected; assisted living services and vocational training for adults with intellectual disabilities; mental health services for children and families, foster care and adoption services; medical services; early education; transitional living services for youth who are at-risk and those in the juvenile justice system; residential camping and retreats for children and families; and international humanitarian aid for children living in impoverished conditions in developing countries.