Children’s Trust is working with parent advisory councils in Richland, Oconee, and Marlboro counties to inform parents, community leaders, educators, and health care providers about effective strategies to prevent childhood abuse and neglect while also providing advice to agencies and organizations on better ways to serve families.

These strategies can include evidence-based programs provided by Children’s Trust, such as the Strengthening Families Program and Triple P (Positive Parenting Program), as well as home visitation models serving mothers and young children, which can reduce the rate of child maltreatment.

Elaine Rumph

Elaine Rumph

We chatted with Elaine Rumph, a leader in our Richland and Lexington counties parent advisory council called Parent Matters of the Midlands, about this effort. The mother of two teen girls, she’s an entrepreneur who connected with Parent Matters through a friend. She enjoys the informative meetings and interacting with other moms.

These councils, an initiative of Children’s Trust funded by the Community-Based Child Abuse Prevention program, can include biological parents, foster parents, adoptive parents, and kinship caregivers – anyone who has the role of parent in a child’s life. The goal is to build better communications between parents and the organizations that serve families in order to make family services more effective and essential.

Dana Powell, the parent and community engagement coordinator for Children’s Trust, salutes Rumph’s commitment to helping families in the Midlands.

“Elaine Rumph has been part of Parent Matters of the Midlands since August 2019. Since that time, she has contributed in many ways but is probably best known among other members as an encourager and connecter,” Powell said. “She is quick to build others up and help discouraged parents realize they aren’t alone and that there are no perfect parents. She’s willing to share her own experiences when they can be helpful for others to hear. Elaine is also familiar with many child- and family-serving organizations and helps parents make connections to those resources whenever she can.”

Three questions for Elaine Rumph

Why is it important for Parent Matters to provide input?

“It’s important that parents have effective communications with local organizations that serve families so that parents can have an outlet to be heard and to know that they are not alone. Parents also need to know that there are resources available to them.”

How can you help parents and families discover community resources?

“What I hope to accomplish in my county’s communities to help families access services is to inform through all forms of communications, be it by social media, word of mouth and or inviting parents out to our Parent Matters meetings.”

Does giving a voice to parents help them make connections?

“The connections I’m making with other parents are very meaningful because you never know what someone may be going through. Having an outlet such as Parents Matters is a great opportunity to connect with other parents who may be having the same experiences.”

For more information on all of our parent advisory councils, contact Dana Powell, the parent and community engagement coordinator for Children’s Trust.

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