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HOW FAMILIES CAN Navigate The New Normal With Your Help…

Family Development is everyone's responsibility...

A happy and balanced world begins from the FAMILIES in it… If you agree with this then continue reading.

It’s the INTERNATIONAL DAY OF FAMILIES today May 15th 2020, and this year’s theme is families in development . The aim of International Families Day is to spread awareness about the benefits of the family systems to the masses.

According to a publication on REPUBLICWORLD.COM the United Nations in 2020, projected this year’s theme to stress the importance of families and how much they mean to us in the context of the pandemic Covid-19. According to the UN, a family has a worth of foundation-pillar in the development of society as social laws and norms are the anticipated form of family bonding and strength.

We can all agree that family is the BACKBONE of every society; and if this is so then we all MUST join hands and intenationally develop the family unit in our various countries. The 3 branches of government- Executive, Legislative and judicial have a part to play in the development of families. The masses- as company owners, business owners, organisations, associations as well as individuals – we all have a quota to contribute in family development and the best time to start contributing our quota is now; as the covid19 has raised many obstacles that has shown us that the family unit begs for development. I’m personally thankful that the Un has seen this and through this year’s theme, is ready to re-visualize the seized development of families, we all must fall in line.

In this article i am going to point out the various ways we can all contribute our quota for family development.

This quote by Brad pitt is one we should all live by.

FAMILY-FRIENDLY Policies That Can Be Put In place By The Government To Guide Employers.

Family-friendly policies refers to those policies that help to balance and benefit both work and family life that typically provide three types of essential resources needed by parents and caregivers of young children: time, finances and services, this is what the government can do. All social and economic policies affect families, but the term ‘family-friendly policy’ usually refers to social programs, laws, and public directives designed to promote and enhance marriage, reproduction, and raising children.

According to wiley.com effective family policies help parents balance work and family, encourage individuals to have as many children as they desire (i personally suggest that the number of children should be regulated) when they choose, promote gender equality, support social protection systems, combat family and child poverty, and improve children’s well‐being (Adema 2012).

Family friendly policies are everybody’s business and it’s time we give it centre stage… Supporting families with policies like parental leave- paternal and maternal has been shown to have wider societal benefits. They not only benefit children, parents and families — they represent one of the best investments governments and businesses can make!

Science clearly tells us that a child’s first 1,000 days is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to shape their brain and increase his or her ability, as an adult, to contribute productively to the economy and society. Now how many parents get to spend that amount of time with their infants? Some fathers are away working on their baby’s delivery day and don’t get to meet their little one until after weeks or months later. Some mothers are forced to return back to work a week or two after childbirth in some countries today. Others get unpaid maternity leave and only a pinch gets paternity leave… The repule effect falls negatively on the society’s economy and wellbeing.

while parents want time to bond with their children and give them the protection, nutrition and stimulation their developing brains need, many just don’t have the time because of the pressure to work long hours, often far from home, to support their families. It gets worse now for professional working parents of young families in this pandemic season where they have to work from home with the children at home and very little or no help; mothers especially get the most hit of the pressure…

Can we see policies enforcing programmes like breastfeeding breaks and support in the work place?

Affordable-quality working hours childcare? this will help essential workers during this pandemic season and beyond. Child benefits and paid parental leave can help busy families make ends meet while caring for their youngest members.

Take parental leave for example, which many countries including mine still have not imbibed; Research has indicated:

  • One month of maternal leave can prevent a 3% decline in infant mortality in high-income countries and 13% in low and middle-income countries. These policies save lives!
  • One month of parental leave increases the duration of breastfeeding by two months. These policies boost health!
  • One month of extended maternal leave reduces a child’s chances of suffering from diarrhea by 35%. These policies can reduce health care costs and absenteeism!
  • According to the Swedish research; when fathers take parental leave, mothers can expect a 7% boost in income. These policies promote female economic empowerment.
  • There is also a cost to inaction. It can cost up to 20% of a worker’s salary to replace employees who leave, let’s not forget the stress of new employee trainings — so a company’s bottom line takes the hit. Yet when these policies are offered, businesses see lower staff turnover and greater staff retention. Despite these clear benefits, only 30% of countries offer maternal leave as per International Labor Organization (ILO) standards. 

Last year, UNICEF issued a report that ranked the world’s richest countries based on their family-friendly policies. Switzerland, Greece, Cyprus, UK, the US and Ireland ranked lowest, some countries weren’t mentioned, that’s to say they don’t have at all.

That’s why UNICEF is advocating for four transformative shifts in support of families with young children:

  1. A shift from maternal to paternal leave so both parents bond with their baby and support each other in caregiving.

2. A shift from infrastructure to people so that when parents take this leave there is no discrimination against them before childbirth, during parental leave or after they return to the workplace.

3. A shift from individual to co-responsibility so that we remove the burden for childcare from the shoulders of parents alone, and see it, rather, as a shared responsibility between governments, businesses and families so that parents are better supported with time and resources.

4. A shift from reducing parenting stress to enhancing family wellbeing so that we see more positive outcomes for children.We need to support the people who do the most important job in the world.

– ( excerpts from a publication by Henrietta H. Fore -Executive Director, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

Family-friendly policies are everyone’s business. Some countries have recorded more broken marriages during this pandemic, what do you think is happening to the children in those families? Now more than ever we need to stand together and call on the world’s leaders in government and in the private sectors for greater investment in family-friendly policies. Now more than ever working mothers need stand together, connect through digital communities like LCDBossMom Community and draw strength, inspiration and support from each other. There needs to be a shift to enable more balanced families in our society because if the family-front is right, our world will be right. THIS IS SO THAT YOU CAN, BECAUSE YOU CAN!

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