Outreaching from UK to the USA and BRAZIL – my lecture

Part of my time at the University was to prepare and give a talk on my research experiences so far. Susana had promoted the lecture for 9am on Wednesday 13th March. I had imagined I would be in the same seminar room I had been in the afternoon before for the Domestic Violence meeting. I found out I would be Lecture Theatre 14 talking to 150 students.

These are the points I tried to convey with a translator;

I drew on positive experiences from visits to both US and Brazil. I brought up differences between the three countries.

I have been introduced to some proactive initiatives by the government.

. Providing Health Agents who live in the area and have a good local knowledge
. Working with grass-roots with communities.
. Providing counselling support to visitors, technicians and managers to cover any eventuality.
. Knowledgeable staff in specialised areas and background in family support. On hand.
. Peer support weekly
. Time set aside for planning weekly activities.
. Worker led groups – the visitors controlling the group environment in order to measure the
success.
. Researchers in Universities having a physical presence in the communities.
. The acknowledgement of Mental and Physical Health for both adults and children in providing an
effective framework for family intervention and prevention.
. Benefits to local knowledge and awareness through research.

Highlights from this to return to the UK include;

. Training more parents who live in the community to work within it and help to create job
opportunities
. Make time for more research and reflection each a weekly children centres.
. Create community hubs to involve families from different cultures and backgrounds.
. Each week at these centres provide one free meal
. Involve more charities to make this happen.

One thing I’ve definitely noticed probably more of a cultural difference is the warmth they share. I said we’d never get away with kissing and hugging the children and parents goodbye in the UK. Heck, we’re so wrapped up Health and Safety we fear picking up a child when they’ve fallen never mind hugging! Then one man at the end came up to me hugged me and said – ‘Take this back with you to the UK’

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