New funding to help B.C. parents deal with kids who have behaviour problems

Program aims to help parents become more confident dealing with aggression, defiance

Children and Family Development Minister Stephanie Cadieux

Children and Family Development Minister Stephanie Cadieux

The B.C. government announced $1.5 million in new funding on Thursday for a “life-changing” program that helps parents deal with kids who have behavioural problems.

The “Confident Parents Thriving Children” program is a free series of telephone workshops launched last year by the B.C. division of the Canadian Mental Health Association.

So far, it has helped more than 1,000 families across the province, helping primary caregivers of kids ages three to 12 to deal with behaviour issues such as aggression, anti-social behaviour, defiance and substance abuse.

“It is very positive. It is clear. … It truly is life-changing,” said Paula Littlejohn, a mother of two from Victoria. She was referred to the program last year by her doctor to get help dealing with her son, William, who has a severe learning disability and ADHD.

Littlejohn said getting her son ready for school or bedtime was a huge struggle, but she learned ways to give mild consequences for negative behaviour and support for positive behaviour.

“I have a more positive relationship (with my son). William is able to use those skills with me.”

Four out of five parents who took part in the program said they saw an improvement in their child’s behaviour, the mental health association said, and reported feeling more confident in their parenting and coping skills.

Bev Gutray, the CEO of the association’s B.C. arm, said this program is particularly effective because it focuses on early intervention and prevention.

“We will see the benefits from this program years from now,” she said. “Parents are committed to the health of their children. They are signing up for the full 14 weeks and that tells us how motivated parents are.”

She said she hopes the government will eventually grant the funding every year, especially with 200 families on the waitlist.

Children and Family Development Minister Stephanie Cadieux said her ministry will monitor the success of the program over time.

“It’s one of the things we’re doing in our cross-government mental health strategy,” Cadieux said. “We don’t know yet about next year, but certainly this is a program we believe has great potential.”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sooke resident Nathan Hanson popped both his driver’s side tires on a pothole near a construction site on Sooke Road. Hanson said he was following a line of traffic and was just before the 17 Mile Pub when he drove over the pothole. (Photo contributed/Nathan Hanson)
Driver blows two tires on pothole near construction site on Sooke Road

Ministry of Transportation says keeping highways in good condition a priority

On Feb. 27, a construction vehicle remained on the site of the former encampment between the Pat Bay Highway and McKenzie Avenue as part a clean-up effort. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
Encampment between Pat Bay Highway, McKenzie Avenue cleared, all residents relocated

Efforts to disband encampment resumed after January fire

Rebecca Lang of Any Thyme Gardening installed a seed exchange library in front of her home on Beechwood Avenue. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)
Victoria gardeners scramble to create local seed exchanges

Fairfield resident’s seed exchange an instant hit

Environment Canada has issued a wind warning for Greater Victoria, with winds expected to get up to 70 km/h Friday morning. (Don Denton/Black Press Media)
Wind warning promises blustery Friday for Greater Victoria

Winds up to 70 km/h expected Friday morning

Passengers in rows 13 to 19 on Air Canada Jazz flight 8069 from Vancouver to Victoria Feb. 28 were exposed to a case of COVID-19. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
COVID-19 exposure found on flight from Vancouver to Victoria

Passengers in rows 13 to 19 on Air Canada Jazz flight 8069 Feb. 28 affected

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry head for the B.C. legislature press theatre to give a daily update on the COVID-19 pandemic, April 6, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C. nears 300,000 COVID-19 vaccinations, essential workers next

564 new cases, four deaths, no new outbreaks Thursday

(Black Press Media file photo)
POLL: How’s your butter?

Recent reports have some Canadians giving a second look to one of… Continue reading

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of March 2

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Walter Gretzky father of hockey hall-of-famer Wayne Gretzky waves to fans as the Buffalo Sabres play against the Toronto Maple Leafs during third period NHL hockey action in Toronto on Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky, father of the Great One, dies at 82

Canada’s hockey dad had battled Parkinson’s disease and other health issues

The intersection of Melrose Street and Third Avenue. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Suspect in custody after two pedestrians struck in Port Alberni hit and run

RCMP asking for video footage, credit witnesses for quick arrest

(National Emergency Management Agency)
No tsunami risk to B.C. from powerful New Zealand earthquake: officials

An 8.1 magnitude earthquake shook the north of New Zealand Thursday morning

Comox Valley RCMP had access to 20 Street blocked off between Cousins and Choquette avenues as they conducted a raid of a house on the block. Photo by Terry Farrell
Comox Valley RCMP raid Courtenay problem house, several arrests made

Comox Valley RCMP conducted a raid of a problem house on 20th… Continue reading

(AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File)
Pandemic stress, isolation key factors as to why Canadians turned to cannabis, alcohol

Study found that isolation played key role in Canadians’ substance use

Grand Forks’ Gary Smith stands in front of his Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster float. Photo: Submitted
Grand Forks’ Flying Spaghetti Monster leader still boiling over driver’s licence photo

Gary Smith, head of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster of B.C., said he has since spoken to lawyers

Most Read