Nov 8 - Dec 31, 2018

The Parenting Connection of Monterey County


The Parenting Connection of Monterey County’s mission is to support parents and caregivers in developing their ability to nurture young children. We have a vision that families in Monterey County thrive because children are parented well. We value parent education that is delivered respectfully, is research-based, honors the whole parent and child, and is appropriate for each age and stage.

PCMC is guided by a set of core values. Teachers strive to uphold the following principles:

– Parents know their child best. Parents (not the teacher) are the experts on their child. The term parent includes primary caregivers of all sorts.

– Curriculum intentionally develops the parent-child relationship.

– Teachers model positive interaction and the healthy behaviors that they want to see.

– Classes are positive, fun, interactive, and joyful – helping parents enjoy the parenting experience.

– The teacher is not the keeper of all knowledge. Teachers facilitate shared interactive learning experiences.

– The needs of individual parents and families are recognized; we accept each family where they are.

The Big Idea

As many as 1 in 4 new parents experience depression and anxiety requiring treatment; we offer a free warmline with confidential, bilingual counselors and free pregnancy and postpartum support groups.

Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders (PMAD) are the #1 medical complication related to childbearing. Unfortunately, many mothers are not being diagnosed or treated for this condition, and few resources are available in Monterey County. The Maternal Mental Health Program fills this gap and provides support that new mothers need through:
• Our Maternal Mental Health Warmline, a free, confidential 24-hour voicemail with bilingual counselors on-call to return calls, offer a listening ear, conduct a postpartum screening as appropriate and make referrals to follow-up care
• Pregnancy and Postpartum Support Groups, held three times each month in Marina and Salinas. Groups are facilitated by a counselor with extensive training in peri-natal mood disorders. For some women, the support group provides the extra support they need to recover. For other women, the support group provides a place for the counselor to offer compassionate guidance to help the mother reach out for additional medical assistance.

The Maternal Mental Health Program has been instrumental in my healing. The warmline was the first step I took towards getting help. The fear, the guilt, the defeat, and the pain of that first call was tough. If it weren’t for the compassionate counselor’s extensive training in PMAD, my journey might have ended there, and I would have continued struggling alone in silence, dragging my family along with me. The supportive/confidential environment of the support groups gave me a space to sort through what was going on and offered connection when I felt most alone. Through meetings I found compassion, acceptance, and resources appropriate for my own healing. Because of PCMC, I am full of life, love, and gratitude again. Myself, my husband, and my daughter are forever grateful to this program that helped me find my way through the darkest time in my life.

— Erika Hoelscher, Age 34, Del Rey Oaks