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Selwyn Parenting Network Autumn Newsletter
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The Autumn 2017 newsletter of the Selwyn Parenting Network Inc.

Welcome to the SPN Autumn newsletter - we are so excited to be heading into Easter celebrations and the first set of school holidays for the year!

The SPN Team has been busy connecting with local families and communities; it's such a priviledge to be part of a district that just continues to grow in its colour and diversity. On Waitangi weekend, we had the pleasure of being part of the Darfield Community Picnic coordinated by Two Rivers Trust, where we taught (and learnt) how to flax-weave. Then in March, thanks to funding provided by the Selwyn District Council Events Fund, we hosted our annual Children's Day celebration at Rolleston Community Centre - if you attended, then you were one of about 2,000.  The day was sweltering hot, and we've noted to definately coordinate more iceblocks next time, so we can offer them to melting parents too.  

Because you asked for it, SPN has also worked alongside MHERC (Mental Health Education Resource Centre) and Rural Canterbury Primary Health Organisation to help plan more educative workshops for 2017 -  the upcoming Resilient Children : Resilient Teens workshops planned for May and June to be held in Springston and Darfield.  Watch this space for more to come.

SPN's Events Coordinator, Cristene, has been working hard to confirm all of SPN'sKidsfest 2017 activities for the Winter school holidays, and we're trying to take some of these further out in the district.  You'll find things happening in Burnham, Darfield, Lincoln, Leeston and Rolleston.  If you don't know already, Parenting Week is happening from 21-31 August 2017.  We are also working with organisers, The Neighborhood Trust, to bring events to Selwyn for parents and caregivers over this period, and details will be in our next newsletter.

We have a fantastic, energetic and diverse group of parents on the SPN committee - they help to develop and guide SPN's direction -  over the next few editions of the newsletter, we will introduce them to you alongside the staff team.

As always, we love to hear feedback or ideas from parents, caregivers, families and community groups about the parenting needs you see, hear about and notice in the circles you move in. Please don't hestitate to contact any of our team to discuss parenting matters - we'd just love to hear from you.

The SPN TEAM contacts are:

Kimberlee Woods, Coordinator
[email protected] or ph 021 268 8964

Jacky Muirsmeath, Community Liaison
[email protected] or ph 021 388 900

Cristene Trenuela-Chan, Events Coordinator
[email protected] or ph 027 412 433

In this newsletter you'll find information about upcoming events and resources that we hope will help make being a parent in Selwyn just that little bit easier, as well as being able to plan some great fun activities with
 your children.


SPN would like to say a big thank you to the following supporters of Children's Day 2017:

  • Selwyn District Council (Events Fund)

  • Rolleston New World

  • Lincoln and District's Community Care

  • Ray White Rolleston

  • Healthy Harvest

  • Lions

  • Methodist Mission

  • Fonterra; and 

  • St John's.

A big ups also to our local emergency services and all the wonderful community groups and businesses that participated in SPN's Children's Day celebration. Without all your support we would not have been able to provide such a successful event to the families in Selwyn - the team at SPN are looking forward to developing and planning Children's day for 2018 and we hope to see you all there again next year!


Holiday Activity Resources

You'll find some DIY Easter crafts from Parenting.com here that are budget-friendly, from decor to wearable art, follow the link to see some great ideas for projects to make with your kids over the Easter holidays. 

As we head into the colder months it can be difficult to find activities that will help keep the kids entertained, follow the link to the What do we do all day website which provides a comprehensive list of activity resources from toddlers to tweens.
Parenting Resources

MHERC (Mental Health Education Resource Centre) offers a  range of beautifully illustrated children's books to help our kids learn about different emotions, sleep problems, feelings, children's mental health issues, bullying, family separation, loneliness, grief and much more.

 A comprehensive list can be found on the MHERC website, or you can go to MHERC at 116 Marshlands Rd, Shirley anytime between 9.00am and 4.30pm, Monday to Friday.
Not a member of their Library? Follow the link to download a Borrower Form.


Allergy New Zealand has estimated that between 5 – 8% of children in New Zealand have a food allergy.

The Kiwi Families website has provided a Food Allergies article, explaining what an allergy is, diagnosis, reducing the risk of allergies in babies as well as listing some useful websites for more information.


Resilient Children, Resilient Teens - Free Workshop

Thursday 4 May 6.30pm - 8.30pm 
Springston Sports Pavilion (Errol Tweedie Rm), Ellesmere Junction Road
Facilitated by Paula Partington
Participants will be provided with the opportunity learn and/or develop skills around:
  • Challenging behaviour;
  • Managing conflict;
  • What is positive parenting;
  • What constitutes bullying and ways to deal with it; and
  • Take home some useful tips and ideas
Enquiries to:

Lee-Anne Tarling, Education Coordinator - MHERC
[email protected]  or  ph 0800 424 399

Brenna Russell, Community Connector - RCPHO
[email protected] or ph:027 228 7995

Jacky Muirsmeath, Community Liaison - Selwyn Parenting Network Inc
[email protected] or ph:021 388 900

or register here
Are you supporting someone with a disability and would like to find out what possibilities there are for life after school?
Enabling Good Lives, Ministry of Health and Scenic Hotels are hosting a transition expo at Riccarton High School hall.
Friday April 21st 2017 from 11am - 7pm.
Information will be available on tertiary study, community engagement, vocational programmes, self advocacy, employment and housing by a range of service providers. 

Beating the Blues - Boosting your connections with those around you
- Free Workshop

Friday, 12 May 6.30pm - 8.30pm
Darfield Rugby Clubrooms
92 North Terrace, Darfield
Facilitators: Pup Chamberlain, Sam Robinson, Lee-Anne Tarling and David Cairns
Participants will be provided with the opportunity to
  • Understand the importance of communication
  • Explore the concepts of 'ups and downs'
  • Ask questions and discuss ideas openly without judgement
  • Share ideas and strategies on how to get off the bus sometimes
Enquiries to:

Lee-Anne Tarling, Education Coordinator - MHERC
[email protected]  or  ph 0800 424 399

Brenna Russell, Community Connector - RCPHO
[email protected] or ph:027 228 7995

Is Kindness your SUPERPOWER?  

Around 270 families in Canterbury include a child with very complex health requirements. For these families, their child’s health needs can create major stress, and often the systems of support available are exhausted. Nurse Maude believes there are people in the community with a particular superpower that could make a big difference in the life of these families. They are coordinating a service that screens, trains and matches volunteers with families of children with complex health needs. This is your chance to help! The Volunteers they are looking for will be able to commit to providing regular support each week, and building a medium to long-term, trust-based relationship with a family.

The support you provide will typically be delivered as a weekly 2-4 hour “block of time”, which could be spent in a variety of ways. It could be anything from helping ensure other children get to sporting commitments, right through to baby-sitting for the child with complex health needs while the rest of the family enjoy an outing. Remember, these families tell Nurse Maude that ANY form of regular support, given with kindness, makes a huge difference in their lives.

The complexity of the child’s health needs; the background, experience and comfort of the volunteer; and the level of trust and knowledge that has developed with the family, will all determine the way the volunteer provides support.

If kindness is your superpower, and you have the time and energy to make such a commitment, Nurse Maude would love to hear from you.
For an information pack about the service and a volunteer application form, contact:

Bridget Scorgie, Volunteer Administrator, Nurse Maude on 03 375-4238.

What's On:

Sat 15th April
10:00am – 1:00pm 

Lincoln Easter Market -
Lincoln Library Green
Easter Egg Hunt, face painting and other holiday themed activities.
A market selling a range of locally grown/made produce, with live music throughout the event.