The Katikati Space Programme, where new parents and babies learn, play and grow together, is held each week at the Katikati Community Centre.
Sixteen mums and babies are in the current group. The babies are aged between 11 weeks and eight months with one baby 10 months. “Our weekly sessions start with a song,” says Ruth McDermott, Space Manager and facilitator. “We have a thought and a sharing moment, then we have the topic of the week, which is on baby development or parenting. We have music each week, singing to the babies and we read a book to them. There is always morning teatime and often an activity for the mums to do.”
Activities have included Plaster of Paris footprints, duraseal mats and bottle top 'caterpillars' plus many others. “The mums have painted a mug with their names for their morning tea and for Mother's Day we had a photographer come in to take mum and bub photos,” says Ruth.
Guest speakers also visit and cover a range of topics. “Sport BOP shared their workshop on Movement for Babies, Sally from St. Johns covered CPR and Choking, and Sleep Consultant Vicki K talked about baby and sleep, to mention just some of our lovely guest speakers. Our topics are discussion orientated so that everyone shares their experiences, and we share information. We also do some trips into the community, for example a library trip for story time.
“It’s really exciting to see the mums getting to know each other, making strong connections and creating their own support network amongst themselves and making plans to meet outside of Space,” says Ruth.
The next programme is scheduled to start on Wednesday 3rd November 2021.