Mothers benefit from Soulful Parenting Programme

Tafelsig women are creating a web of peace and good relations.

Tafelsig mothers have learned their worth and have improved relations with their children and spouses.

This is the ripple effect Masjid Darussalam, in Lost City, had in mind when they arranged a parenting programme for a group of mothers.

Igshaan Abrahams, mosque programme co-ordinator, asked for the programme to be held again, after last year’s parents’ workshop.

He said they have a creche with 140 pupils and were having difficulty with parent involvement.

“We picked up that many a time the problem lies in the home, whether it was discipline, respect or education,” he said.

Mr Abrahams said the mosque would continue having similar programmes and follow ups to ensure more calm at home and in the community.

“I believe education is triangular, it involves the child, parent and teacher,” he said.

Twelve women completed the 10-week Soulful Parenting Programme, a flagship project of NPO Breathing Spaces for Mindful Living, on Wednesday July 24.

They received certificates and shared their lessons of growth and the changes they have seen in their homes.

Gakeema Davids, 42, who works for Islamic Relief, was tasked with sending five mothers to attend the programme but decided to join and learn how to better communicate with her own children.

“I use to listen to just attack. Ek was a mal mens,” she said.

Through the programme she learned about the robot concept – red, to stop; orange, to think; and green, to respond – to better listen and have her two teenage children speak to her.

“When my son asked me if he could go out, I would ask a dozen questions: who will be there, when are you coming home, what are you going to do there. I would just bombard him with questions,” she said.

Ms Davids said this would make him rather not talk to her.

She said now she had to stop, listen to him, make quality time and allow him to speak.

Ruwayda Isaacs, 64, who looks after her four grandchildren, aged between 16 and 24, said she felt like a slave, cooking and cleaning up.

“I was very strict raising my
children but these are my grandchildren and I can’t hit them,” she
said.

“To be honest I used to swear and they would just ignore me,” she said.

She said after the first class she went home and just went about her tasks quietly.

The next day she announced that she would no longer cook and clean up after them.

“I was calmer, which they noticed and asked my husband about the changes they saw in me. (He) told them I was attending this class,” she said.

Mother of three boys, aged 10, 9 and seven-months, Tauheerah Williams, 28, said lessons learned has impacted relationships inside and out of the household.

She and her brother had a rocky relationship for many years but since the classes, said: “I’ve changed”.

“Even my children said ‘Mommy you’re so good now’,” she said.

Ms Williams said her children were now more willing to share their feelings.

She said the traffic lights are pasted on the fridge.

“As Mummy wil uit haak dan sê hulle Mommy stop and think before you respond,” she said.

Facilitator Nassera Ebrahim said: “Soulful parenting is about laying the foundation for hope, healing and happy homes by putting the heart and soul back into parenting”.

She said the programme aimed to raise the consciousness of parents through the understanding of parenting as a sacred trust and the introduction of reflective, mindful activities, which promote calm, “awakens empathy and the innate wisdom of parents”.

Sarah Foale, who facilitated the mindfulness exercises, said she was “very happy with the progress of the group”.