Kids First is leading a world's first trial of Children & Mothers in Mind (CMiM) which combines the 8-week Connections and the 10-week Mothers in Mind evidence-based programs developed in Canada.
Connections provides a unique framework for mothers/parents to explore the inter-relationship of domestic violence/victimization, parenting, substance abuse and recovery, and their children’s development.
Mothers in Mind (MIM) is a mother and child program specifically designed to meet the parenting needs of mothers who have experienced family violence, childhood abuse, neglect or sexual assault, and have children under the age of four.
Today at the University of Melbourne, Canada's Dr Angelique Jenney (author and developer of MIM) and Dr Margaret Kertesz (lead researcher at the University of Melbourne into CMiM) were both interested onlookers and insightful analysts as clinicians recounted three seminal case studies from across the five sites running CMiM in Victoria.
Whilst it was apparent that blending the programs has presented inherent challenges from a clinical perspective, the CMiM therapeutic program has so far produced a number of success stories. What was also apparent is the resilience and strength of mothers whose bad experiences, often dating back to how they were parented, have been compounded by complex issues entailing former partners, family, abusive relationships, low self-esteem and addiction, to name a few.
Essentially, by initially working through the mums' trauma and the challenges of their current situation, CMiM is designed to build capacity for mothers to then utilise the resources provided to parent more effectively and develop greater connectedness with their children.
Evaluation of the CMiM program is now underway and will further explore the sector-wide implications of this program.