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New program educates, supports CAFB families

COLUMBUS AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- TenderCare is a new program providing supportive and educational resources for all CAFB families with children from birth to age 5.
Right from birth, healthy infants are developing ideas about how things work. They are learning to use their senses to explore their world. They gather information about faces, sounds and language, and about objects and events. Brain connections are formed at an incredible rate over the first few years of life. A child's brain almost triples in weight between birth and age three. By age five, approximately 90% of brain development is completed, and most children have an average vocabulary of 2000-2500 words. Children also learn who to trust and love, as well as basic self esteem, during these early years.
Many child development experts believe that early experiences shape what a child will become later in life. Children raised by caring adults in a safe and predictable environment generally do better in school and have more positive relationships with their families and friends.
TenderCare has been created to assist parents as they work to create a safe, loving and stable home for their children. A variety of services are currently being offered and more will be announced as the program grows.
Families currently expecting a child, or who have a young child, can receive free information in various forms including written materials, books, DVDs, and CD-Rom. There is information focusing on: pregnancy, adjusting to parenthood, caring for a new baby, parenting toddlers and preschoolers, effective discipline and many more parenting and health topics.
A "Newborn Care" class will be taught by Capt. Genevieve Stratton, an experienced nurse in the Medical Group who has worked with many infants and new parents. Moms and dads are encouraged to attend and bring their baby. Parents will learn about nutrition and development, as well as baby care including: bathing, sleeping, safety and dealing with crying. Assistance with breastfeeding issues will be provided, and the class will end with a question and answer session. This class will be held every Thursday at noon in the Commander's Conference room on the second floor of the Medical Group.
"Parenting With Love and Logic" classes will meet for one hour per week for five straight weeks. The class will start on March 26 at 10:30 a.m., and will meet for five Mondays in a row at the same time, ending April 23. The class will be held in the Medical Group Training Room. You will learn easy to use techniques that will end temper tantrums, get kids to bed the first time, end battles at mealtime, create happy, fun families and develop youngsters that grow into safe, smart, confident teens.
Supportive and counseling services can be accessed to deal with adjusting to being a parent, feelings of depression, bonding with baby, stress on the marital relationship, or other concerns.
You can take advantage of this program and enroll in classes by calling Ext. 2556. Questions and feedback regarding the program can also be directed to this number.