The impact of separation and divorce on the family

Separation and divorce have been evidenced as one of the most stressful life events a family can experience. Children’s chances are strongly influenced by their parents’ relationship, whether they are together or separated. Exposure to parental conflict can have long-term negative impacts on children’s early emotional, behavioural, cognitive and social development. Academic research from around the world has evidenced that frequent, intense and poorly resolved conflict causes stress and depression for the whole family including children, undermining their education and employment prospects.

The Parenting Apart Programme

The Parenting Apart Programme support parents when there is breakdown in the parental relationship due to divorce or separation to prioritise the mental health, emotional and physical wellbeing of their children. The voice of the child is at the heart of everything they do.

Through an initial 4-week programme, parents explore their family challenges, individually and jointly, learning how to communicate and form a respectful parent working relationship, that results in a Parent Working Agreement which both parents agree to abide by.

This outlines how parents will work together to support their child’s wishes, emotional and physical wellbeing, covering practical issues including transition of care, childcare arrangements, holidays and schooling. The Parenting Apart Programme reduce the length of time that a non-resident parent has no direct relationship with their child, and the time, expense and trauma of extended court proceedings.

For more information about The Parenting Apart Programme, click here

The Parenting Apart Programme also recorded a special interview with Elizabeth Coe, that can be viewed here.

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