New "Stress Busters" courses for adults starting 1st week of Oct in Belfast & Newry!
At The I Can Centre™ we are strongly committed to the health, well-being and empowerment of women, incl those who have become single parents. Accordingly, we have a number of projects in place, and planned, to support and empower women incl those in crisis pregnancies and lone parents. Such projects incl:
All our community courses are parent- and child-friendly, and often a parent may sit strategically, so that he/she can see her child at play while a class is ongoing. So, if children or childcare is an issue, please feel free to contact us in advance.
* Planned /future project
At The I Can Centre™, we do not offer crisis pregnancy counselling as we are not able to support abortion as a procedure (given our review of the evidence, and our committment towards equality, diversity and respect for all). However, we do have almost twenty years experience in prevention work, AND in supporting women incl those in crisis / in crisis pregnancies, and those suffering post abortion distress and regret.
We offer a range of community CBT supports to help pregnant or lone parents address challenges of low mood, stress and/or all types of anxiety e.g. worry, panic, and low confidence. This support can include free 1-1 CBT with one of our trainees (only at certain times/locations), AND DAKtivist™ places on our community courses, i.e. for lone mums, we may be able to take an act-of-kindness pledge as part/full payment for a class. Furthermore, the more paying attendees we have, the more DAKtivist™ places we can offer.
We offer a growing range of supports to help young people with low mood and all types of anxiety incl worry, panic, phobias and OCD. For instance "Teen Stress Busters" is particularly suitable for school-going young people aged 14-18 years, and DAKtivist™ places may be available to lone parents for their children. 1-1 CBT support however may be more suitable for young people with more complex needs.
At all our classes we collect quality, children's items that attendees may no longer need, e.g. toys and clothing. These are then redistributed via community organisations to help lone parents. Attendees at our classes should place donations in "The Kindness Chest" - visible at all classes, knowing that this help will make a huge difference to the lives and well-being of lone parents and their children, especially at holiday times.
Please note: it is our policy NOT to donate individual items to individual parents. Instead all items are logged, and then given directly to organisations who are better positioned to use these as part of a wider package of resources and supports.
GreatBadges.com is a new, social development initiative that we hope will provide jobs and flexible work opportunities for lone mums. By coming together to make the badges, mums might also find peer support and camaraderie, while making really great badges that are inspiring, fun and informative, i.e. great badges that are great in terms of content and also quality. We are very proud to support this prolife initiative, and to help sell these badges until the group is in a position to have their own website. More about this initiative will follow shortly.
Parenting Supports and Information
Many women report an understandable feeling of relief after abortion, but others can become distressed immediately, or decades later - we call this distress "Post Abortion Regret (PAR)" and it can be very disabling. For those who do not report post-abortion regret or distress we are keen to understand why given the potential for transferability of insights and coping skills to others who are struggling (see research project below).
For those that do have significant regret and distress post abortion, we are keen to hear your story in confidence, and to learn from your experiences. Potentially, we can also offer therapy based on the very best insights from psychology and CBT. In terms of therapy, we often take a two-phased approach:
We find those who have completed our Stress Busters course, will need fewer 1-1 sessions. By the same token, many of our clients prefer confidential 1-1 CBT support from the beginning.
We are carrying out in-depth interviews, in confidence, with women who have been through crisis pregnancies - those who have had an abortion, and those who continued with their pregnancies to term. We hope to use the findings anonymously:
To find out more, or to share your story in confidence (incl by phone, skype or other) please contact our Centre Director, psychologist Dr Ann O'Hanlon.
Women Helping Other Women (WHOW, or "wow" with a "h") brings prolife and prochoice women together, in a respectful and supportive environment, to do what women do best - collaborate i.e. to discuss and share ideas about the best ways to support women in crisis pregnancies and give them real and non-violent choices that truly enable. So, if you genuinely wish to see women continue their pregnancies to term, AND/OR to have real choices (beyond abortion), then help us find ways to make this happen, e.g. to lobby for resources such as:
Prolife WHOW members will work separately to influence, if not repeal, the Thirty-sixth Amendment of the Constitution Bill 2018 (a pending amendment to permit the Oireachtas to allow abortion) - click here. Those based in N Ireland will also seek to minimise abortion there except where there are clear dangers to the woman's health (see download at base of page for common prolife concerns / conversations about abortion).
To join WHOW, and/or attend a meeting, please just get in touch in confidence and let's work collaboratively towards 'better'. #TogetherIsBetter
There can be a lot of misinformation about abortion. For educational purposes, we recommend watching an educational video by Dr Anthony Levitino - an abortionist who carried out over 1,200 abortions.
A one-page summary of common conversations, or concerns, about abortion can be downloaded here. This summary of questions and responses is not suitable for anyone feeling vulnerable or distressed about abortion. Such readers should instead access any of our range of CBT supports (see 2nd download), a GP referral for 1-1 therapy, or other (see our "follow-up supports" page).