Exploring Melbourne expands parenting horizons
As Spring was finally springing in Melbourne, a group of families from the Good Shepherd Primary School in Gladstone Park embarked on a special excursion to Melbourne. The adventure marked the final stages of the families’ participation in Spectrum’s ‘Parenting in a New Culture’ program.
The program aims to help families who have recently arrived to Australia, to thrive, by building parenting skills and improving family functioning, while adapting to Australia’s culture. The excursion is always a highlight for both parents and their children, as well as the staff who have worked closely with them over a number of weeks or months.
The action packed day was led by a knowledgeable tour guide introducing the families to various iconic Melbourne landmarks such as the Yarra river, the Myer shop window display presenting ‘Alice in Wonderland’, Carlton Gardens (for a delicious picnic lunch) and the Melbourne Museum.
For some, it was their first trip to the city and the excitement and gratitude for the experience was palpable. The laughter of the children bubbled over to big hugs of thanks to parents, teachers and staff included. One mother, whose family has been in Australia for a few short months stopped and paused near the Myer shop windows as if to inhale her surroundings, taking it all in. “Thank you… Thank you God. Thank you for helping us reach safety in Australia”.
Excursion co-ordinator, Spectrum’s PINC Program Officer, Sandra Abid said of the experience, “The enjoyment of the families, so freely expressed, perfectly sums up what Spectrum strives to achieve for the people we serve – to feel at home in Australia”.