One year into the pandemic, MI Parent Edge and Mercer Island Youth and Family Services have partnered to give much-needed support to locals by sponsoring the Parenting in Place masterclass series.
The webinars, which feature a nationally known diverse group of experts, began on Feb. 17 and will run through April 7. According to MI Parent Edge, the series is for parents who continue to struggle with the challenges of working from home, virtual learning and the stress of the pandemic.
Parents are fatigued and are ready for their children to head back into the classrooms, said Lori Cohen-Sanford, MI Parent Edge content lead, whose daughter is a junior at Mercer Island High School. By listening to the speakers, she hopes that Islanders can reset their mindset by gaining a fresh insight into parenting.
“Sometimes it’s just hearing something again or hearing something in a new way that really can kind of unlock a new, more positive pattern in your parenting,” Cohen-Sanford said.
The Feb. 24 program will feature speakers Michele Borba and Madeline Levine in a conversation on “Raising Resilient Kids.” Other topics in the series will include sex and gender, raising ethical children and more.
Cohen-Sanford, who has a masters degree in counseling and clinical psychology, said that being involved with MI Parent Edge has been a great experience. She’s interested in finding the most vital parenting practices and sharing them with the community — and applying them to her own life.
“As your kid grows up, they go through so many different phases, so even though you feel like you might be finally getting something right, something changes and you have to flip and figure out what the next thing is,” she said.
During the pandemic, MI Parent Edge members have become more determined and motivated to reach out to others who have taken on the multi-pronged role of parent, emotional supporter and teacher, Cohen-Sanford said.
“I think it’s been a huge opportunity in some ways for Parent Edge because there’s just more accessibility with online resources and they’re also more affordable,” she added.
Residents can tune in to the live webinars at 5 p.m. each Wednesday or access the recordings through April 11. To register at a discounted rate of $10 and view the schedule, visit http://www.miparentedge.org/
The final program will be a moderated town hall on April 7 and will feature a number of the previous speakers responding to the most pressing concerns and questions from the Parenting in Place community.