Meet Diane Clack – A Passionate about Parenting coordinator
It is a privilege and very exciting to have been nominated to attend 'The Patron's Lunch' on 12th June. I keep reflecting on the many, many Mothers' Union members who have served for years with hard work and commitment and I feel that I am representing them, not just my own personal efforts.
I joined Mothers' Union in the 1980's when my children were young. I was Young Wives' deputy leader for two years and then lead the group for two years. We worked with Mothers' Union and I decided to join. During this time I was the Mothers' Union representative on the Diocesan Board of Education.
I have been a social worker and a teacher. When my teaching commitments reduced I was looking for a new project and was accepted on the Passionate about Parenting Facilitator training in 2012. My co-facilitator and I are currently running the seventh Parents' Group since we completed our training. Each course is for 8 weeks and each session lasts about 90 minutes and we probably do up to an hour of planning for each session. We average 5 or 6 parents in each group and the beneficiaries of the work extend to partners and children. The first session of the most recent Parents' Group was on 21st April and we started with a jam Swiss roll, a candle, a Union flag and a picture of Her Majesty the Queen. We sang 'Happy Birthday'!
At the end of 2014 I was invited to join the team as a volunteer trainer for the Passionate About Parenting Facilitator training. To date I have only been involved in the training of one group - that is five days of training. My responsibilities in this role include supporting learners as they complete their Learning Journals and Portfolios of Evidence, marking completed work and being involved in the Internal Verification Process of work marked by another trainer. It is very difficult to quantify the number of hours spent on this work. The Facilitator training is accredited by the Open College Network and is at Level 3 (A level equivalent). The work produced represents enormous effort by the learners and it is our responsibility to ensure this is acknowledged while being confident that they are suitable to fulfill the role for which they are being trained.
For some years now I have also been a volunteer at Ford Open Prison where Mothers' Union supervise the play area when families visit. There are sometimes as few as 8 children in the play area but sometimes we have had 18! Alongside this, as a Mothers' Union member I help with fund-raising, make cakes, knit prayer-shawls amongst other things!