Interventions to support and develop positive parenting are mandated by Chapter 8 of the Children’s Amendment Act (Act No. 41 of 2007), which deals with prevention and early intervention. Section 144 focuses on developing the capacity of parents to act in the best interests of their children by strengthening positive relationships within families, improving the care-giving capacity of parents, and using non-violent forms of discipline.
The child’s leadership and personality development starts in the family. The parent-child relationship is at the centre of this development. So in order to raise more empathetic leaders, with good problem-solving skills it is important to involve their parents. The parent-child relationship is also vital in the child’s academic performance and socio-emotional development which are necessary in raising the kind of leaders we need. Family poverty often strains the parent-child relationship and affects the child’s performance. By combining parenting education with poverty alleviation strategies, the family income is increased, as the relationship between parents and children improves. This is why it is mandatory for parents of all members of the LLW club to be members of the Iziko or have completed the iziko curriculum.
Iziko is a Zulu word for “firesides” which plays an important role in the socialisation of Africans. The fireside is often a place for learning by sharing stories without feeling judged. It is based on this concept that GLLI built the Iizko clubs. An Iziko is a group of 10 to 15 parents who come together once or twice a week to share information on parenting and develop responsible and responsive parenting practices. It is a place to reflect on social and cultural norms that promote the abuse and maltreatment of children, empowers parents with understanding of child behaviour and alternatives to abusive punishments through a research-based manual (Iziko manual). Izikos are grassroots-based and are facilitated by GLLI –trained parent educators. Since 2014, over 100 parents have gone through our Iziko clubs in Cato Manor Durban, Mthatha area (South Africa) and Gaborone (Botswana). Many have reported a positive change in their behaviour with their children.
Meet one of our participants in the Iziko