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Updated March 13, 2019
The Early Childhood Collaborative of Southington (ECCS) has launched an initiative to reduce stress in early childcare providers. Self-care is necessary to prevent burnout and to remain in an optimal state of well-being.
Childcare providers face the combined pressures of caring for children, dealing with co-workers and parents, and meeting regulatory compliance issues while receiving low wages and minimal employee benefits. Family childcare providers face the additional economic challenge of running a small business with fluctuating income in their own home. Many individuals in the child care field think that their hard work, time, and effort are under-valued in society. As a result, there are high level of stress on childcare staff and frequent turnover in the field.
The first workshop called “Self-Care for Early Childhood Professionals,” was presented by Susan Averna, PhD on January 23rd. It focused on three aspects of self-care: self-awareness, self-reflection and self-compassion. Participants learned tools to maintain a state of regulation and to increase well-being. These body and mind practices aim to support educators in being present and engaged with the children in their care and to better respond to their own needs and those of the children they serve.
View the presentation here.
We also discussed the relationship between behavior, emotions and needs. View the chart.
The second workshop was presented by Amy Inzero on March 8th at Soul Space Yoga and Wellness. It focused on identifying the benefits of mindfulness and learning which mindfulness practices are the best fit for you. We also participated in a Storytime Yoga activity that can be used with children. View the handout which contains lists of websites, apps, books and other resources.
Yoga is a mind-body practice that is a type of complementary and integrative health approach. Many of the popular techniques found to reduce stress and anxiety derive from yoga including controlled breathing, meditation, physical movement, mental imagery, and stretching.
This initiative is funded by the Main Street Community Foundation’s Women and Girls’ Fund.