Originally published on December 6th, 2019.
On Saturday 9th November, Dr Maeve Hurley, founder of Ag Eisteacht, will present a keynote speech at OMEP Ireland’s annual conference at Cork Institute of Technology.
OMEP is an international, non-governmental and non-profit organisation concerned with all aspects of early childhood education and care. The title of this year’s conference is “Relationship Matters – what matters in early years relationships.”
Maeve’s speech ‘Building relationships in early years settings at key moments’ will explore how transitions can present opportunities to build relationships with and support parents in early years settings.
“Young children experience their world as an environment of relationships, and these relationships affect virtually all aspects of their development. Early years practitioners work to provide nurturing, stimulating and reliable relationships in their settings,” said Maeve.
Maeve will talk about how early years providers can make a difference to outcomes by understanding the impact life transitions can have on parents and how listening actively, reflectively and adopting a relationship-centred approach can make a difference.
“We know that people turn to someone they trust when they are struggling to manage the feelings of tension and anxiety at times of change. When this person is able to respond in a sensitive and proactive way and be present, it can help a parent to get in touch with their own feelings first, and having done that and had these acknowledged, they can then begin to think about a way forward and what might help.” said Maeve.
“It is an absolute honour to be invited by OMEP Ireland to address their delegates and share insight with early years practitioners as being able to anticipate times when families may be struggling and offer support early as early intervention is key in preventing longer term more intractable problems”
Later in the day, Maeve will present a workshop with Patsy Hannan, Ag Eisteacht trainer, on ‘Parental Conflict – Evidence and Impact’.
The aim of the workshop is to raise awareness of the impact of conflict on children. They will introduce conflict as a normal part of relationships and will look at the effects of destructive and constructive conflict on children’s health and wellbeing.
This will include a powerful DVD, ‘Kids talk’, highlighting the impact of parental conflict on children.
Maeve said: “We will look at the different ways that children respond to conflict in the documentary and will offer participants an opportunity to consider the children in their care and what they observe.”