In your neighbourhood there are many community organizations, volunteer groups, and social economy enterprises providing services for families and support for parents in their new role. Are you familiar with them?
At every stage of life, getting involved in community life can be enriching for you and for other parents. In your community you’ll find information, help, respite, solutions, friends, a babysitter… or maybe even the desire to become a volunteer!
Find out about the organizations in your neighbourhood by contacting your CLSC. You’ll also find contact information for a number of associations, agencies, and support groups.
If you have a sudden concern about your child, you can call LigneParents (1-800-361-5085) or visit www.ligneparents.com (In French Only). This free support hotline and online service is available throughout Québec. Don’t hesitate to call or check out the site—staff will be happy to provide information even if the situation doesn’t seem serious. You can also contact Première ressource, aide aux parents at 514-525-2573 or 1-866-329-4223.
If you’re looking for written material, try the Guide Info-Famille, published by Éditions du CHU Sainte-Justine (in French only) or visit www.editions-chu-sainte-justine.org. The guide and website provide a list of books, associations, and websites that can answer parents’ specific questions.
Does your child have sleep or behavioural problems? Does she seem overly nervous or sad? Talk to a doctor or a trusted health professional. Don’t feel guilty—you wouldn’t hesitate to consult a health professional for an earache, and you shouldn’t for other health problems either. A CLSC social worker can help or direct you to the appropriate person.
Ordre des psychologues du Québec can also refer you to psychologists in your region who work with children. If you are on a tight budget, some insurance policies and most employee assistance programs will reimburse part of these expenses.