Parents for Parents publication
NHS Cornwall and Isles of Scilly
Commissioned by the NHS, we were asked to develop an aid for young first-time mums and dads in the first year of having a baby. The project was produced in partnership with Arts for Health Cornwall and Isles of Scilly, who carried out a programme of creative consultation with parents of babies and young children. Artists led a series of workshops with parent groups throughout Cornwall, to find out what they thought would be most useful for new parents to know in the first year of having a baby, and from these workshops came the idea for the book.Read More...
We were tasked to produce a document that would aid young mums and dads by understanding, supporting and encouraging them to become confident in their own approach to parenthood. Although there were plenty of 'baby books' on the market, there were none that were experiential – rather, they were all 'how to' guide books. The classic ‘baby book’ even, which encourages parents to collect all the ‘firsts’ of their new child, by its very nature can instil a level of anxiety about whether the parent is being a good mum or dad – especially if you forgot the date of that first smile!
Instead, our aim was to celebrate the differences in parenting and to provide support using anecdotal peer-to-peer advice, that would better connect with the young audience. Space is provided throughout the book and the young parents are encouraged to engage and write, draw or illustrate their own personal interpretations of parenthood, to take ownership of the book and the advice it contains. Ultimately the hope is that the book can help provide young mums and dads with the confidence to pick and choose the advice they're given and to find their own path through parenthood.
The book is now being offered to all new parents – not just young parents – who may benefit from it in Cornwall, highlighting the impact and success of this project.