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A month of news from One Family.
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While the clocks have gone back 

it is disappointing that Budget 2015, announced on 14 October, was an opportunity to move forward for one-parent families that Government did not take. The small increase in child benefit and the partial reinstatement of a Christmas Bonus were welcomed by many but the failure of Government to commit to retaining the Income Disregard level or provision of affordable accessible childcare are major let downs. 
 
One-parent families are already those most at risk of, or living in, poverty in Ireland. They already have the lowest disposable income out of all households in the state (EU-SILC 2010). This week, a new report by UNICEF showed that the child poverty rate rose by over 10% to 28.6% between 2008 and 2012, corresponding to a net increase of more than 130,000 poor children here, with Ireland ranked in 37th place out of 41 countries in the league table measuring relative changes in child poverty.
 
53% of lone parents are currently in the labour market. Following on from the eligibility changes announced in Budget 2012 to the One-Parent Family Payment which will affect over 50,000 lone parents next year, and in 2014 to the Single Person Child Carer Tax Credit, the failures of Budget 2015 will result in even more children being forced into extreme poverty as we are hearing from lone parents who are being forced to give up their part-time jobs. Read our reaction to the Budget here. We have further meetings scheduled with policy makers about these issues.

On a more uplifting note, we celebrated National Parents Week, hosted a Positive Parenting for Changing Families seminar in Dublin Castle, and launched a new and expanded suite of services for families and for professionals. Our Director of Policy & Programmes, Stuart Duffin,  presented at the invitation of Aperio - Společnost pro zdravé rodičovství at its International Roundtable on issues affecting one-parent families across Europe. Our CEO Karen Kiernan wrote in theJournal.ie about family diversity and a positive parenting approach for separating parents. And we entered the Better Together video competition. Read on for more.

Seminar

At our seminar last Tuesday in Dublin Castle, we celebrated National Parents Week and launched our new manualised programme Positive Parenting for Changing Families. The speakers (pictured) were Helen Deely, Head of HSE Crisis Pregnancy Programme; Donagh McGowan, Donagh McGowan & Co Solicitors, incoming Chair of the Law Society Family Law Committee and member of the Family Law Court Development Committee; Dr Anne-Marie McGauran, NESC and One Family Board Member - Chair; One Family's Karen Kiernan; Stella Owens, Centre for Effective Services, Chair of Special Interest Group on Supporting Parents; and Niall Egan, Jobseekers and One Parent Family Policy Section, Department of Social Protection. Participants could also avail of free taster workshops. To watch short videos from Donagh McGowan and Niall Egan at the event, click here.
 

New Services

At our seminar we were also delighted to launch an expanded suite of One Family services and supports for one-parent families, people sharing parenting and families in transition, and the professionals who work with them. Our new Positive Parenting for Changing Families is an expert manualised programme extensively researched over several years. We offer this One Family accredited programme regionally as part of our Professional Development service and to parents in a weekly module format in Cherish House which is rolling out across the North-West region this Winter. New services for parents also include parent mentoring in Dublin, Cork and Wicklow with additional areas being added; a Mediated Parenting Plans service for people experiencing separation; and in January 2015, our parenting programme will be available online.

The Monthly Survey

We invite members of the public to contribute to our research, policy papers and budget submissions by taking part in our survey every month. The topics are of particular relevance to people parenting alone or sharing parenting. Participation is anonymous and takes just a few minutes. This month's survey is about what Budget 2015 means to the families we work with. Take it hereTo read what you told us last month about Water Chargesclick here

Better Together

Vote for us! One Family has entered the Better Together video competition. We would be grateful if you could watch the video and vote, and share the video with your family and friends and ask them to vote too. You can vote every day until 21 November. Our video was filmed at our annual Family Day Festival this year. We founded and promote Family Day, inspired by UN International Day of Families, to raise awareness of family diversity in Ireland today and to celebrate all families. 

Halloween Tips

Our weekly 10 Ways to series of parenting tips is posted to our home page every Friday. It is followed by a live Facebook Q&A on the posted topic every Monday from 11am-12pm with our Director of Children & Parenting Services, Geraldine Kelly. Last week, Geraldine shared her top ten tips for parents to ensure that everyone has a fun and safe Halloween. You can read them here.

We wish you, and your family and friends, a very Happy Halloween!
If you missed the award-winning Today FM documentary Cherish All The Children about our establishment in 1972 and our ongoing evolution, featuring interviews with our brave founders, our first President Mary Robinson and many more, you can listen here.
Read this month's press releases issued by One Family.
One Family believes in an Ireland where every family is cherished equally, and enjoys the social, financial and legal equality to create their own positive future.
Learn more about One Family.
Our mailing address is:
Cherish House, 2 Lr Pembroke St, Dublin 2, Ireland
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