Evaluation of the
Positive Parenting Campaign
Dr. Vincent Marmara, Research and Statistical Consultant
Positive parenting campaigns tend to leave an impact amongst parents. From recent cross-sectional surveys, it transpired that a noticeable part of the parents’ population found such campaigns effective. Furthermore, when respondents were asked ‘What do you remember the most from such campaigns?’ The most popular response to this question was ‘To spend more quality time with your children’. Others said ‘How to build a parent-child relationship’, ‘How to be a better parent’, ‘The way how you educate your child/children’, ‘How to be positive with your children’. These were all positive messages that such campaigns focused on. The fact that parents are remembering these important messages about parenting gives further evidence about the usefulness of such campaigns and their importance in our society.
There were three campaigns from the Positive Parenting Malta so far.
One of the first initiatives of the Taskforce was to launch a series of campaigns among the general public
on the importance of positive parenting as per one of the measures of the strategy.
Three campaigns have been launched so far. The use of Maltese and English languages was used to reach the whole of the population of Malta. The tagline for the campaigns was KUN GENITUR / BE THE PARENT.
The first campaign focused on positive parenting and young children. Emphasis was placed on the importance of spending quality time with children and being physically present to notice, listen, encourage, love and support them in their development. This campaign mainly made use of billboards, television programmes and the radio.
Popular lines of the campaign were:
- Qattajt ħin ma’ wliedek illum?
- Għidtilhom lil uliedek li tħobbhom?
- Smajthom lil uliedek?
- Kont ta’ eżempju tajjeb għall-uliedek?
The second campaign focused on positive parenting and adolescence. Adolescence is known to be a very particularly challenging time for parenting as adolescents may strive to be independent yet at the same time, they still require the time, love, stability, and secure base of their family system.
In this campaign more investment was placed on the Positive Parenting Malta Facebook page which as shall be explained further down was also set up. The aim was to reach more parents across different strata of society. Television adverts emphasised how important positive parenting is across the different phases of parenting. Importance was also given to the self-care of the parents themselves, positive co-parenting relationships and the need for the development of a secure attachment in children. Posts about how to support adolescents with their self-esteem, emerging sexuality issues, substance use, bullying and friendships amongst others were present. More prominence to the special role of fathers in parenting continued to be placed.
Popular lines of the campaign included:
- Nemmnu fik
- Dejjem hawn għalik
- Kburin bik
- Nafu li qed tikber u nafdawk
The third campaign is currently focusing on the perinatal period and positive parenting. Research continues to show how crucial the perinatal period and early intervention are for the wellbeing of families and society in general. This campaign is working closely with the Perinatal Mental Health Service at Mater Dei Hospital and the Parent-Infant Mental Health Association to continue to offer psychoeducation and support to parents.
The Facebook posts focus on a variety of issues that are pertinent during the perinatal period including the importance of looking after the mental health of parents, developing a positive co-parenting relationship and support in developing a secure attachment with the infant. Additionally, in the third campaign two influencers were also used as a medium; these were Mr Ben Camille and Ms Jennifer Dimech. Influencers are becoming more and more popular in our culture and the Positive Parenting Taskforce does its utmost to make use of any current trend to its advantage to raise increased awareness on the great value of developing a positive parent-child relationship.
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