Parent Support Proram
Parents play an integral part in Special Education (SPED). We believe parents and families are invaluable contributors and partners in our collaborative approach to SPED. So when parents are engaged and involved, everyone - child, parents and families, teachers, schools, and communities – benefits, and our SPED becomes increasingly rich, meaningful, resourceful, and effective. At RTM, we are committed to building positive relationships with parents and families and working with them to identify their child’s strengths and needs and build upon competencies in a positive and supportive way.
Parent Support Programs
RTM provides parents with contextually specific training and education support so that they can gain knowledge and understanding of their child's needs and effective ways to support their development.
In rural areas of Rwanda, there is essential no resource and support for SPED. RTM's strategy to address this critical gap is to train the parents so that they can better support their children's development as parents, educators, and caregivers. The training is done in mainly three different ways:
1. Daily Partner - Parents both learn and practice about caring and teaching children with disabilities by participating in SPED classes as volunteer assistants.
2. Regular small group meetings - Parents meet with Parent Support Lead to learn about disabilities, SPED, health care and other topics.
3. Home-visiting - Our teacher and support staff visit a family at home to observe, record, and support parents in their everyday home setting.
Christian Teaching and Support
Through the Gospel, we empower our parents to discover and see God's greater meaning and purpose of their children and their parenthood and encourage them to walk along with God in their journey.
We believe in the power of the Gospel and Christian values in bringing permanent positive change to people's lives. In regular small group bible studies, we share the Gospel to empower our parents to discover God’s greater meaning and purpose for their children and their parenthood and walk along with God in their journey.
Do they have to be Christians to stay in the program? Do we require them to convert to the Christian faith? No. We don't believe in a practice of directly or indirectly forcing someone to convert their faith that is not compatible with our mission to share Jesus' love with them.
Parent Support Group
We help parents establish a support group around them so that they can increase confidence and self-esteem while reducing self-blame and self-stigma. Getting through challenges is much easier when one does not have to do it alone.
We help our parents be part of a support network consisting of not only people around them in their community (neighbors, peer parents, teacher, support staff) but also supporters from Canada who want to be their friends.
In the regular small group sessions, parents have opportunities to share their lives, feelings and challenges and find ways to support each other.
Through a program called Heart-to-Heart, they are also matched with a supporter in Canada to become a prayer partner. Praying over a friend is an act of love and a powerful way for us to bear one another’s emotional burdens. Galatians 6:2 tells us, “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way, you will fulfill the law of Christ.”