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Networking to gain participants for your courses

Networking to gain participants for your courses

Written by Elissa Woolley

I can not stress enough the importance of networking. I will include a list of people/businesses that I have approached in order to make them aware of the service that I offer.

If after the first meeting you hear nothing, hope is not lost! The more you are out in the community and networking with other organisations, the more credibility you get. There have been services that have taken 3 exposures for them to be confident enough to ask for a meeting with me to discuss what I do.

In fact- one service I connected with didn’t necessarily refer any families but paid for a training course for me to attend because they wanted more community members trained in domestic violence prevention. Once you start making connections, people will offer up suggestions of where else to go. It is a snowball effect really!

There are not many services that provide help to parents: we have a unique product. Coercive control is big in the media right now- use this in social media posts. It is now considered illegal in Queensland and yet parents still use it as a way to manage children’s behaviour.

Networking is time consuming and pays nothing but the benefits come over time. Sometimes we suffer from imposter syndrome. We have these moments where we doubt ourselves and think “who am I to be teaching this?” We don’t need to be perfect to make others aware of better ways. Any improvement in family relationships is a win!

Here is the list of contacts:

  • Play therapist
  • I have a Facebook page and an Instagram page (this is totally out of my comfort zone- if you have teens- enlist their help!)
  • Childcare centres – speak to the director, offer an information night for parents, PD’s for staff. Many centres were happy to send my details and a short blurb out to families through their email network.
  • Schools – Head of department
  • Child psychologists and paediatricians – they refer parents to parenting programs all the time. Generally it is to do PPP. If there is another alternative and someone who can work with the family face to face it is preferred.
  • Neighbourhood centre – I joined the mailing list- this updates me with community events where I can hold a stall- I have sensory tubs for children, give out bubbles and have flyers and cards for parents.
  • Bush kids – they have a lot of families who access NDIS and have parents on a waiting list
  • Hippy – This is a school readiness program that offers workshops for parents on a fortnightly basis- they have asked me to come and run a workshop on children’s behaviour
  • NDIS Facebook pages – there should be one for your area, advertise your courses and that they can be funded
  • Facebook mothers groups – Up here they are called Bundaberg Mums, Bargara Mums. There is a smorgasbord of mothers who are keen for any parenting help!
  • Child youth and family mental health – this is based in our hospital- they have families who don’t necessarily qualify for the mental health services they offer but the families are looking for something to help their families/children.
  • Interagency connection meetings – This is run by Family and Baby Network up here- you can attend meetings that bring together agencies to better service the community. Attend anything you can!
  • Churches of Christ
  • Bundaberg Businesses Women’s Network – up here there is a women’s group who support other women in business- they will advertise and you can hold an event where the other women come to see your business.
  • Support workers/support co-ordinators – both of these have access to clients that have NDIS funding. If people don’t spend the NDIS funding- it is taken off them- many support staff are trying to help clients find ways to use their funding- just remember they must get approval before you start, everyone’s plan is different.
  • Last night I attended an information evening at TAFE for educators in the area. I presented a 5 minute run down of what I do. Educators can then take that back to families. Up here C & K runs community events and meetings. It is a massive early learning franchise.
  • Open night at your business – invite people from other services to a nibbles and drinks night where you can share what you do- they can also share their business. Advertise it as a networking event.
  • There is a new Australia wide kindy uplift funding from the govt – child care centres will have access to this funding very soon. The T.E.T. qualifies as a suitable program that the govt will fund for kindergarten educators across Qld. When you approach child care centres this can be mentioned. (Not all centres have the funding but it is worth an ask!)

Elissa Woolley

Elissa Woolley

Bundaberg, QLD

I have worked with children and families for over 20 years. It was towards the end of my psychology degree that I formed a real interest in behaviour modification. I was so disappointed that the foundation of my behaviour unit was primarily based on rewards and punishment. I knew there had to be a better way. With 9 of my own children, I had the motivation to find a way to have my family function effectively without coercion and control as a way of changing behaviour. I came across the ETIA while on my search and it changed my life. I am now in the process of finishing my post graduate diploma in Relationship and Family Therapy. I love how P.E.T. creates more connected relationships between parents and their children, and it is so rewarding to be part of this positive change in families.

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Loving Family | About ETIA

About ETIA

The Effectiveness Training Institute of Australia (ETIA) Ltd is a not-for-profit, community based organisation that is dedicated to making courses in communication and conflict resolution skills available and accessible to all people in Australia.

ETIA’s mission is to provide individuals with effective communication and conflict resolution skills to build connected, harmonious relationships.

Our inspiration and programs come from the late Dr Thomas Gordon who is the author and founder of Parent Effectiveness Training (P.E.T.) program and Gordon Training International (GTI).

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