Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Parenting and the President - Part 4 - White House Conferences on Effective Parenting

The third feature of the National Effective Parenting Plan (see Part 1 in this series) consists of White House Conferences on Effective Parenting.

These highly visible events would bring together the leading authorities and researchers on effective parenting to share state-of-the-art thinking and results, as well as showcasing the top parenting programs and resources.

By supporting and hosting these events the President will be indicating loud and clear that effective parenting and parenting education are crucial to the quality of life and future of the nation. These conferences would also serve to educate the public about what is being done to assist parents, and recommendations from the conferences will help set the effective parenting agenda for the nation.

There is ample precedent for these types of conferences.

The first was a White House Conference on Children and Youth in 1909, which was followed by similar conferences every ten years through 1970. There have also been White House Conferences on Aging which started in the 1960s and have continued every ten years since. The most recent of the Aging conferences were accompanied by 900 state and local gatherings which were held independently from the conference, but were recognized for their input and suggestions. In addition there have been a White House Conference on the Family and one on Child Care during the Clinton administration in which I was proud to participate.

The Child Welfare League of America, whose origins can be traced back to the 1909 conference, is in the process of spearheading an effort to have a White House Conference on Children and Youth in 2010. That conference would focus on the most vulnerable children and youth. The League has generated a nationwide network of groups like CICC and NEPI to be involved, and they already have several members of congress from both sides of the political aisle on board to support the necessary legislation. Our goal with that possible conference is to make sure that effective parenting and parenting education are issues and services that are included.

Our participation and support, however, will not in any way stop our efforts to move the President to convene the White House Conferences on Effective Parenting that were described above.

Like the first two features of the Plan, discussions about these White House Conferences will begin to take place once we have the official ear of the Obama administration.

The fourth part of the National Effective Parenting Plan, a multi-faceted, federal government supported Effective Parenting Initiative, is the most detailed part of the Plan. This Initiative, which will be described in several upcoming articles in this series, is similar to what we proposed to the Clinton and George W. Bush administrations during our previous attempts to engage presidents as effective parenting champions. These stories will include details of how both administrations were accessed and the historical happenings that influenced the outcomes of those attempts.


How You Can Be Involved...

You can participate by commenting on this and future articles in The Parenting and the President series.

You can become supportive through letting the world know that it would be a better place if all children were raised by effective and sensitive parents who receive excellent parenting education. You can express such sentiments through signing our online Effective Parenting Petition (check here).

And /or you can become a member and supporter of the NEPI, the National Effective Parenting Initiative.

There are three types of memberships available, each of which has its own series of educational benefits and involvement opportunities. Click on the membership type you are most interested in learning about:

Your membership dues are not only used to provide the member benefits but to also support the various advocacy actions that are needed to bring these important matters to the attention of the president and the public in general. This entire effort is of a grassroots nature and membership dues, and funds that have been contributed to CICC over the years, are the only monies that are supporting it now.

For those of you who want to make a financial contribution but do not want to become members of NEPI, you can support this grassroots effort by making a tax-deductible contribution to CICC.

Click here to donate.

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