What... (i.e. camp, dance class, birthday party)
        
 
Pick a NYMetroParents Region: All Regions   Manhattan    Brooklyn    Queens    Westchester    Rockland   Fairfield    Nassau    Suffolk  

Resources

   

FREE PROGRAM FOR PARENTS TEACHES HOW TO AFFECT POSITIVE CHANGE IN COMMUNITY

     Home  >  Articles  > Support Groups & Associations
by Lisa Chung

Related: parent support groups, parent leadership programs, parents in the community, how to work make changes in your community,


The Parent Leadership Initiative is a free program that teaches parents how to affect positive change in the community for their children.

Gina Mineo of Huntington is about halfway done with the 15-week Parent Leadership Initiative program her community offers, which means she’s close to reaching her goal of becoming a facilitator for support groups geared toward parents who have kids with special needs.

Parent Leadership Initiative
Gina Mineo, who strives to become a support group facilitator for parents of kids with special needs, cradles her newborn daughter, now a 6-year-old who has speech and cognitive delays. Her daughter was the inspiration behind Mineo's decision to enroll in the Parent Leadership Initiative.

The PLI program, established more than 20 years ago and funded by various foundations and donations, is designed to teach parents how to work effectively with local government, media, and civic groups so they can assume leadership positions and affect change in their communities.

“Parents sometimes need more help…than these kids with special needs,” says Mineo, who has a 6-year-old daughter with speech and cognitive delays. “It’s an extraordinary experience. I’m learning every day about my child. Navigating your way through [the] system, especially when you first start out, is challenging. It’s good to have other parents beside you who are going through this too.”

With a focus on childcare issues like health, quality schooling, and neighborhood safety, the PLI program is guided by parents who each have a pet cause. Part of the Child Care Council of Suffolk, Inc., it connects local politicians to the parents in the community, with the belief that family is the heart of the community.

“PLI gives parents a voice. It lets them realize the power within them, and [they] are empowered to use their voice the right way—effectively and efficiently for the community,” says Denise Quintyne, director of PLI. “Local officials are thankful for the program, too. It’s helping them to better serve the community.”

Once they complete the course, the graduating class is responsible for guiding the incoming class of parents, ensuring a growing network of proactive parents within each community. PLI is present in Huntington, Southampton, Islip, Babylon, and Brookhaven, and 81 parents are currently enrolled in the program.

As a single mom, Mineo is grateful for the tremendous help provided by her daughter’s public school, which offers her peace of mind while she works full time as a massage therapist, specializing in infant massage therapy. And she’s dedicated to keeping it this way for future generations. “From early intervention to the school district, the people I have dealt with have been very supportive at every turn, and I have been lucky to have been able to obtain all the services my daughter has needed,” Mineo says. “I want to give back to the community, and as a parent, you have to be proactive. I am looking out to ensure that budgets don’t cut necessary programs.”

To learn more about PLI, visit childcaresuffolk.org and click on “Parent Leadership” under the “Parents” tab.

 

Get free a whine stopper
Receive our weekly highlights newsletter
Over 1,000 local activities

More Support Groups & Associations Articles

Future Applications of Brain Research for Kids With Special Needs
Support Groups for Parents of Children with Special Needs in Suffolk County, Long Island
Support Groups for Parents of Children with Special Needs in Nassau County, Long Island
Support Groups for Parents of Children with Special Needs in Staten Island
Support Groups for Parents of Children with Special Needs in The Bronx

Be a good fellow parent and share this with a friend who would be interested
Email Friend

Local Support Groups & Associations Sponsors

Island Wide Speech
2539 Martin Ave. (side entrance)
Bellmore, NY
516-415-2751
Auditory, speech and language therapy is provided ...

Island Wide Speech
2539 Martin Ave. (side entrance)
Bellmore, NY
516-415-2751
Auditory, speech and language therapy is provided ...

MKSA
125 E. Bethpage Road, Suite 5
Plainview, NY
516-731-5588
Marion K. Salomon & Associates, Inc. serves parent...
See Our Support Groups & Associations Directory

local zones

Nassau

Nassau cont.

Suffolk

Suffolk cont.

Westchester

Westchester cont.

Fairfield

Rockland

Rockland cont.

Queens

Queens cont.

Brooklyn

Brooklyn cont.

Manhattan

Copyright 2014 NY Metro Parents Magazine Site Design: THE VOICE